There are few teams in college softball hotter than the Tennessee Lady Vols are right now.
With their 9-0 run rule victory against the Appalachian State Mountaineers on Tuesday, the No. 2 Lady Vols extended their winning streak to 16 games. Freshman catcher Lexi Overstreet, however, said that the team is focused on the games and not the streak.
"We're not really thinking about it at all," Overstreet said. "We go out there and just play, get the W, and we don't really worry about the streak."
Even though the Lady Vols made quick work of the Mountaineers, senior second baseman Lauren Gibson thinks that the team still has things they can improve going into the weekend.
"There's always stuff we can improve on no matter what," Gibson said. "We definitely had a really good game, but there is always stuff that we can improve on and get better, especially for SEC games."
However, the bashing of Appalachian State won't matter when the Lady Vols head to Oxford, Miss., to defend their month-long perfect record against the Ole Miss Rebels in this weekend's series.
The weekend series became a lot simpler from a strategic standpoint when sophomore pitcher/infielder Cheyanne Tarango pitched five shutout innings against the Mountaineers, allowing pitchers Ivy and Ellen Renfroe to get a full week of rest for the weekend instead of coming out in relief.
"They're (Ivy and Ellen) never really in relax mode because they were prepared tonight to pitch," co-head coach Karen Weekly said after Tuesday's game. "We talked about tonight possibly being a night where we go three, two and two (innings), just depending on how the game went, but Cheyanne just took the game from the start."
If the Lady Vols want to have success this weekend on the road, the offensive combination of Gibson and junior shortstop Madison Shipman, who combined for seven RBIs in last year's series against the Rebels, will have to continue their hot streaks at the plate (the two have combined for 20 home runs and 91 RBIs this season) to help the pitchers get out ahead.
First pitch from the Ole Miss Softball Complex on Friday will be at 7 p.m. Saturday's game starts at 3 p.m. and Sunday's matchup will begin at 2 p.m.