No. 13 Mizzou Softball leaves Florida undefeated
KISSIMMEE, Florida – 55 runs, a .375 batting average, and 26 stolen bases were all the no. 13 Mizzou Softball team needed this weekend to leave Florida without a loss in 2016. First the Tigers beat the Stephen F. Austin Ladyjacks by a score of 5-2, and later on defeated the Stetson Hatters in a 13-1 slugfest.
In the top of the first inning in game number one, Missouri drew first blood against Stephen F. Austin after doubles by redshirt senior CF Taylor Gadbois and freshman 1B Rylee Pierce. Gadbois lead off the game by doubling to left field, and with two outs Pierce’s double drove in Gadbois.
The game tied at one a piece until the third, when Mizzou went off on the Ladyjacks. With two outs, redshirt senior SS Sami Fagan was hit by a pitch which opened up the floodgates of the Tiger’s offense. Following the free baserunner, consecutive singles by Pierce, sophomore 3B Amanda Sanchez, junior DH Chloe Rathburn, and junior C Kirsten Mack scored three runs and nearly put the game away for Missouri.
Junior RHP Tori Finucane got the start for the Tigers, and went two innings giving up two runs on five walks and a third inning single.
With two runners on and no outs in the bottom of the third, Missouri Head Coach Ehren Earlywine decided to take out Finucane and insert freshman RHP Danielle Baumgartner. Only one Ladyjack would score after Earlywine’s decision in the third, but that would be the largest extent of the damage that Stephen F. Austin would do the rest of the game.
Missouri scored one more run in the fifth after Sanchez stole home, yet they would not need the run support due to Baumgartner’s stellar performance. To close the game out, Baumgartner retired 10 straight Ladyjacks and extended her scoreless innings streak to 17.0.
At the end of the first game, Baumgartner earned the win by throwing five innings, giving up two hits and a walk, and striking out three.
In game two, Mizzou only needed five innings to put the away the Stetson Hatters by a score of 13-1.
Sophomore LHP Paige Lowary started for the Tigers, and went four innings surrendering four hits, two walks, and an unearned run after Sanchez committed an error to allow Stetson junior RF Lydia Kinney to reach first base and later score on a single by Stetson senior 3B Brittany Hawn.
Rathburn led off the game with a two run homer to left center, and Missouri lead Stetson 7-0 before the Hatters could muster together their one and only run.
Sanchez and Fagan left game two with three RBIs a piece, and Sanchez capped her weekend off with a two run shot to right field in the fifth inning.
All but one run surrendered by the Hatters pitching staff was earned, and they gave up 15 hits to Missouri’s hot offense.
Paige was awarded the win for the Tigers, while freshman RHP Brooke Hutto took the loss for the Hatters.
The Tigers will be tested on this next road trip as they will face North Carolina State, Stanford, Colorado State, Oregon and BYU in the Mary Nutter Classic in Cathedral City, Calif. Mizzou is scheduled to play five games in three days with game one starting on Feb. 25.