No. 7 Mizzou Softball Gets to 7-0 with Two Wins in Palm Springs
PALM SPRINGS, CA - No. 7/7 Mizzou used another offensive showcase and clutch pitching to improve to 7-0 overall in Thursday action at the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic. A nine-run second inning powered by the second career grand slam from sophomore 1B Kelsea Roth helped get the Tigers past Maryland, 13-1, in five innings. Nine strikeouts, including three in the seventh inning, by sophomore Bailey Erwin and a two-run ground-rule double by senior catcher Jenna Marston in the fifth inning proved to be the difference in Missouri's 2-1 win over San Diego State.
Maryland dropped to 3-2 with the setback, while San Diego State fell to 6-5 with the loss. The Tigers' two opponents made NCAA Regional appearances in 2012.
In the initial game of the event for Mizzou, the Tigers' put away Maryland with their bats in the second inning. Sophomore 3B Angela Randazzo started the squad's big inning with a leadoff triple. Freshman 2B Emily Crane also notched a hit while Mizzou used walks and steals to build a 5-0 lead with bases loaded and two outs. Roth then cleaned off the bases with her fourth home run of the season. The grand slam improved Roth's season RBI total to nine.
After Maryland hit back with a single run in the top of the third, sophomore OF Kayla Kingsley singled to start it off for the Tigers. Sacrifice flies from senior catcher Rachel Hay and Randazzo scored two runs, with Crane also scoring on a wild pitch to record three more runs for Missouri.
Senior IF Princess Krebs blasted a double to left center to score redshirt freshman Taylor Gadbois in the fourth inning to set the final score of 13-1.
Erwin's pitching set the tone for the Tigers in the second game of the day against San Diego State. Mizzou was held in check until Marston's extra-base hit scored Gadbois and sophomore OF Kelsi Jones in the top of the fifth. The Tigers took the lead back after SDSU was able to plate a run in the fourth inning for a 1-0 lead.
Three strikeouts from Erwin (3-0) in SDSU's last chance at the plate cemented her complete game performance against the Aztecs. Her nine strikeouts set a new career high, with her previous best of eight coming against Eastern Kentucky on Feb. 18, 2012.
The Tigers face No. 5 Florida at 2:30 p.m. CT (12:30 p.m. PT) on Friday, Feb. 22 to finish the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic. Mizzou then heads to Cal State Fullerton on Saturday, Feb. 23 for a double head (4 p.m. and 6 p.m.).
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