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SOFTBALL RECAP/LINKS: Tigers sweep that other Columbia team, prepare for Roos

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Mizzou Links/Softball Recap for Wednesday, April 6

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There wasn’t much in the way of news on Tuesday, so rather than do a recap/preview of Mizzou Softball’s weekend against South Carolina and the KC Roos game today, I’m recapping the game here and I’ll post the preview later this morning!

It was a good weekend for the Tigers... in many sports actually, but we’ll focus on Larissa Anderson’s softball team here. Much has been made about Missouri’s recent struggles. Going into this past weekend, they Tigers had lost six of their last seven, including a loss to [gasp] THAT school to the west. It seemed the worst of times, and the worst-er of times. However, if there was one thing I noticed during that loss a week ago to the fake birds, it was this— the Tigers were able to manufacture 7 runs without relying on the long ball and they did some things right, mainly aggressive baserunning and generally good ABs.

Over the weekend, Coach Anderson echoed my sentiment (I’m so smart, y’all), saying she’d talked with the team about the need to manufacture some runs and get on base any way they can. “We always knew we’d get back on the right track... It’s great to find ways to win and score runs. The long ball will come around. We put up runs and we put up a fight [against kU]. They just got less runs than the other team,” she said.

Here’s your weekend recap (apologies for the delay).

GAME ONE, Friday at 6:30pm

Friday night was one for the books, as Kim Wert crushed her 48th home run of her career, breaking the all-time HR record in the bottom of the fifth, while also being 3-3 on the night. Laurin Krings tossed a pretty masterful complete game, picking up her tenth win of the season.

The Tigers struck first in the bottom of the first as Jenna Laird led off with a walk and Brooke Wilmes got aboard with a shot right back at the pitcher, who bobbled it, allowing her to take first. Kim Wert lined a single to right with the bases loaded, making it 1-0 Mizzou.

The Gamecocks took over the lead themselves with a two-run shot to center by C Jordan Fabian, making it 2-1 SC in the top of the third, but it would be short-lived. With two outs in the bottom of the third, Wert singled to right side. A wild pitch sent her to second and Kara Daly walked to put two runners on. Alex Honnold hit a grounder back up the middle that was deflected by the pitcher. Her throw was off the mark, and both runners scored, making it 3-2 Mizzou.

South Carolina seemed like they were ready to strike back in the top of the fourth on a pair of one-out singles, but ultimately they were unable to plate any runs as Specs struck out the next two batters, leaving the bases loaded. In the bottom of the fifth, the record-breaking home run came as Wert launched a solo shot to right-center, her first since March 5 against St. Thomas. As for what took her so long to break it, Wert - always quick with the dry humor - said she, “just wanted to build up the suspense after being stuck at 47 for a while.” Teammate Abby George had to remind her to do the curtain call.

The bomb made it 4-2 and that was all the Tigers needed. Krings closed out the rest of the game, seemingly striking out batters left and right, and got up to nine K by the game’s end, including two apiece in the sixth and seventh. She actually seemed to gain steam as the game went on.

Karen’s Players of the Game: Kim Wert, for her 3-3 performance and the record-breaking home run; Laurin Krings on her complete game, nine strikeout performance. She only allowed four hits, to go along with three walks and only two earned runs.

What Coach had to say: “We needed that. Just a great outing all the way around. Really excited for Kim Wert. Great for her to be able to do that in front of the home crowd. What’s really cool about breaking records is she’s (Wert) going to know the legacy behind the record, and others will strive to be like her.”

GAME TWO, Saturday at 4pm

Mizzou scored first in the second game, as a Kim Wert RBI single brought home Jenna Laird, who had gotten on base with a walk. The Gamecocks took over the lead in the third after the first two batters reached with a single and a walk. With runners on the corners, Tiger wrecker Jordan Fabian hit a single to center to tie the game, then a single and RBI groundout gave the Gamecocks a 3-1 lead. With one out in the third, Megan Schumacher came in for Weber, who’s day was done after just 2.1 IP. (see notes below for more about the short leash)

The Tigers were just getting their offense started though, as Mizzou got one back on a Kendyll Bailey RBI single, and tied it up in the fourth after Casidy Chaumont hit a hard grounder up the center that was misplayed by the shortstop, ultimately scoring Kara Daly. In the bottom of the sixth, the Tigers really got going, as a Daly single, an Emma Raabe walk, and a Chaumont liner to right loaded the bases. Jenna Laird then hit a single through the right side, making it 5-3 Mizzou. Brooke Wilmes’ sac fly scored Chaumont and Bailey’s RBI infield single brought home Laird, making it 7-3.

Karen’s Player of the Game: Megan Schumacher’s 4.2 innings in relief saved the game for the Tigers. She only allowed two hits and two walks. In the postgame, she referenced her curve being her best and strongest pitch. It was working that day and she’s confident she can get people out with it.

What Coach had to say: “Overall, I’m just really happy with how we battled. We found some ways to create some opportunities. We continued to compete throughout the entire game.”

GAME THREE, Sunday at 1pm

The Tigers got ahead first in this one, making some solid contact early on as a Kim Wert double to center in the bottom of the first scored Jenna Laird, who also doubled. Fans thought perhaps South Carolina would tie it up at the top of the second when they loaded the bases on back-to-back singles, but Laurin Krings forced a really nice double play from 2B Bailey —> C Moore —> 1B Raabe, and got a HUGE strike out, her first of many K’s on the day.

Jordan Fabian, the aforementioned Tiger killer, tied up the game in the top of the third on a solo shot to center with two outs. Fabian was one of several Gamecocks batters who took Specs deep into counts (several were able to get 11-14 pitch ABs). Krings was able to limit the damage though, as she struck out the final three batters of the inning.

In the third, Kendyll Bailey scored what would end up being the winning run, a solo shot to left— her eighth of the season (a career-high) with two outs. After the Tiger bats started strong, they’d considerably cooled off, so KB’s bomb was much needed. After her shot, Wert hit a really hard ball up the middle, about taking off the the pitcher’s head, and Honnold followed it up with a single. After what felt like 6 million pitches — it was actually 13 — new SC pitcher Bailey Betenbaugh struck out Daly, leaving the Tigers with two on.

A few more theatrics got the crowd anxious in the top of the top of the fourth, as Krings’ first two outs came on just four pitches. However, a rogue ground ball to short and what seemed like a stuck ball in Wilmes’ glove led to two runners aboard for SC. An infield pop up to short ended the inning, and the Tigers will still on top. There would be no more real chances for the Gamecocks in this matchup, as Specs was dealing and Emma Nichols came in to close out the the seventh for the Tigers, retiring the side, earning her first save of the season on just 9 pitches. As for why HCLA didn’t keep Specs in? Krings was up there in pitch count at 118 (see aforementioned notes about the long ABs).

Karen’s Players of the Game: Jenna Laird, for her multi-XBH game. While the second extra base hit didn’t result in a run — she was stranded on third base — the first resulted in scoring a run and putting the Tigers on top. Laurin Krings: Aside from that solo shot, Specs was awesome. She struck out six on six hits, allowing only one run and ZERO walks.

Moving on to the present, and Mizzou has a game today!

WHEN: Wednesday, April 6 at 4pm

WHERE: Mizzou Softball Stadium, Columbia, Mo.

TV/STREAMING/RADIO: SEC N+, KTGR (Tiger Radio Network)

STATS: StatBroadcast (scroll to down to game and click on Live Stats)

ON TO THE LINKS!

I’m off Links the rest of the week as it’s my birthday on Thursday. I’ll be tweeting for the game today though, so maybe you’ll see me on the twitter.


Yesterday at Rock M


More Links:

Football

Hoops/Crootin’ Time/Former Player Info

  • Kiya Dorroh finds a new home in the Mountain West!

Other Mizzou Sports

The fifth-year senior from Melfa, Va. batted .538 on the week with a double, a home run, and four RBI. In the series sweep of South Carolina, she drove in a go-ahead run in the first inning of all three contests.

PITCHING PROBABLES

Mizzou sends left-hander Nathan Landry to the mound for Wednesday’s start. Landry owns a 4.10 ERA on the season in 26.1 innings, including three previous midweek starts. The southpaw has fanned 34 batters while walking just four on the season.

Kansas counters with right-hander Jake Adams who is 2-0 on the season with a 4.50 ERA in seven appearances. Adams is making his third-straight midweek start, working 12.2 innings over the previous two against Wichita State while allowing two earned runs in each game.

SERIES BUSINESS

Mizzou and Kansas meet for the 348th time on Wednesday night. The Tigers lead the all-time series 216-129-2. The Tigers are 84-32-1 at home against the Jayhawks and are looking to avenge a pair of one-run losses from a year ago.

  • Plays on repeat:

Mizzou in the Pros (AKA: Utah Jazz Corner)

  • Quin Snyder’s Utah Jazz (46-32, 1st place in Northwest, 5th in the Western Conference) took on the Grizzlies on Tuesday night and went to OT before ultimately xxxx, xxx-xxx. Jordan Clarkson played 31 minutes off the bench, and had 22 points on 7-13 shooting (3-8 from three), 5-6 FT, with 5 REB, 5 AST, 1 STL, 1 TO and 0 PF. He was +17 (team high) on the night. NEXT UP: vs. OKC Thunder, tonight at 8pm and vs. PHX Suns Friday, 4/8 at 8:30pm on NBA TV.

Last Game(s):

April 2 L to Golden State, 111-107: 28 min (bench), 14 pts on 5-13 shooting (2-8 from three), 2-2 FT, 3 REB, 2 AST, 2 TO, 3 PF, +0

March 31 W over the Lakers, 122-109: 29 min (bench), 19 pts on 8-16 shooting (3-9 from three), 1 REB, 1 AST, 2 STL, 1 TO, 0 PF, +5

  • TILLY and the Lakeland Magic’s season ended on Saturday with a W over Maine (Celtics). In his 19 mins off the bench, JT had 6 points on 3-6 shooting, 6 REB, 2 AST, 1 TO, and 4 PF. He was -5 on the night.

3/31 W 129-91 over Cleveland: 20 min (bench), 14 points on 5-8 shooting (0-2 from three), 2-2 FT, 11 REB, 2 TO, 4 PF, +6

3/29 L 140-136 to College Park Skyhawks: 22 min (bench), 9 points on 4-10 shooting (1-1 from three), 7 REB, 2 AST, 0 TO, 5 PF, +0

Rookie Season STATS: 31 G / 20.9 MPG / 10.1 PTS / 64% from 2FG / 66.7% FT / 2.1 OREB / 3.2 DREB / 1.9 AST / 1.4 TO / 0.5 STL / 0.8 BLK / 4 PF / 110.3 OFF RTG** / 112.4 DEF RTG /

*According to the NBC Sports in an article about 5 months ago, the average offensive rating in the NBA is 106.2.

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