Tag Archives: softball

Thinking Out Loud Saturday Sports: Earleywine talks about the 2015 softball season

University of Missouri softball coach Ehren Earleywine on April 16, 2012.

University of Missouri softball coach Ehren Earleywine is looking forward to a strong year from the pitching staff.

Missouri fielded a very young softball team last year and most of the team returns this year. KBIA Sports Director Darren Hellwege has a long conversation with Missouri softball coach Ehren Earleywine about what he thinks could be a really good 2015 season for the team, highlighted by depth at the pitching position.

Darren Hellwege logoThe team’s annual Black and Gold game is scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 7 in Columbia. The team then hits the road for several weeks before its home opener on Wednesday, March 11, a double-header against Southeast Missouri State University.


New softball stadium, football facility for Mizzou approved by curators

By The Associated Press

A large crowd takes in a softball game at University Field on May 17, 2014. The facility has a listed capacity of 500 people. The University of Missouri Board of Curators have approved a request for a new softball facility. (KBIA file photo)

A large crowd takes in a softball game at University Field on May 17, 2014. The facility has a listed capacity of 500 people. The University of Missouri Board of Curators have approved a request for a new softball facility. (KBIA file photo)

COLUMBIA —University of Missouri curators have approved a request by the flagship Columbia campus for a new women’s softball complex and a new facility for indoor football practices.

A master plan for the Columbia campus endorsed by curators Thursday includes the two new athletic facilities. The Read more of this post

Missouri softball sweeps Ole Miss

Photos by Sam Richmond

Story by Sam Hustis

COLUMBIA – For the second weekend in a row, the Missouri softball team swept an SEC opponent beating the visiting Mississippi Rebels. The Tigers completed the sweep Saturday afternoon when they beat the Rebels 9-1 in six innings due to the run rule.

Tori Finucane delivered a strong pitching performance after allowing two hits, one unearned run and five strikeouts.

The Tigers scored nearly every inning and got the offense started with a solo home run from Natalie Fleming. Saturday was the third game in a row with a home run for the infielder.

The runs kept coming for Missouri in the second inning when Kelli Schkade scored from third on an Emily Crane ground out. This was Crane’s first series back after missing two weeks with a knee injury.

With the Tigers up 5-1 in the sixth inning, Crane hit a sharp single to right field scoring Taylor Gadbois and Schkade. The very next batter, Mackenzie Sykes, tripled to right field and brought home Crane.

Fleming ended the game with an RBI sacrifice fly, moving Missouri to 35-12 on the year, and 12-6 in conference play.

The Tigers host in-state rivals Missouri State on Wednesday before heading to Gainesville, Fla., for a weekend series with the No. 5 University of Florida Gators.

Thinking Out Loud, Saturday Sports: A long conversation with Mizzou’s Casey Stangel

Darren Hellwege logoThis week, KBIA sports commentator Darren Hellwege kicks off a new format to his weekly reports with a longer, feature interview.

This week he talks with pitcher Casey Stangel, who joins Missouri’s softball team this year. In addition to her famous name, she talks about her favorite position on the field and her excitement about playing in the SEC.

He also talks with new associate head coach for soccer, Brian Dooley, and takes a look at this year’s volleyball season. And of course, he throws in a little bit about football, too.

Length: 59:00

You can listen to Darren’s show Saturdays at 6 a.m. on KBIA FM 91.3

Mizzou’s Thomas earns record fifth Pitcher of the Week honor this season

By Karl Roskamp

Missouri pitcher Chelsea Thomas delivers a pitch.  She threw a complete game and allowed one earned run, but ended up losing for the fourth time this season on April 13, 2013.

Missouri pitcher Chelsea Thomas delivers a pitch on April 13, 2013.

The Southeastern Conference named Missouri senior Chelsea Thomas the SEC Pitcher of the Week for the fifth time this season on Monday afternoon.

The award gives Thomas a tie with former Tennessee pitcher Monica Abbott for the most SEC Pitcher of the Week recognitions in one season.  Abbott achieved the feat in 2005.  The award gives Thomas 17 Pitcher of the Week awards for her career.

Thomas pitched her 11th complete game no-hitter of her career in a 2-0 win over No. 4 Tennessee.  It was the first time Tennessee had been no-hit since 2002.  Thomas totaled seven strikeouts, three walks and one hit-by-pitch and improved her season record to 20-4.  The win gives her 13 conference wins this season, the most in the SEC.

Thomas will take the circle again at the SEC Tournament against No. 22 Arkansas on Thursday at 3 p.m. at John Cropp Stadium in Lexington, Ky.

Mizzou to face Arkansas in SEC Tournament

By Karl Roskamp

It’s been a winding journey for No. 11 Missouri as it gears up to play No. 22 Arkansas in the Southeastern Conference Tournament on Thursday.

Missouri has dealt with transfers, injuries and erratic weather en route to a three-seed in the SEC tournament.  The culmination of those factors has lead to the Tigers being a tired team.

“This time of the year, you’re so exhausted,” coach Ehren Earleywine said during a teleconference Monday afternoon.

Earleywine is taking a hands off approach to the tournament.  He plans on having players rest and study film, rather than practicing in Lexington. “If you don’t have it now, you won’t have it then,” Earleywine said.

Despite the factors leading to a tired team, players should not be overwhelmed playing in a new conference tournament.  First, Tennessee co-coach Karen Weekley called the Tigers “SEC ready” based on the team’s high-caliber of coaching, hitting and pitching.

Secondly, Missouri did not have the tournament on its radar.

“At the start of the year, it was not one of our goals to win the SEC Tournament,” Earleywine said.

Earleywine is focused on the Super Regional and sees the tournament as a tune-up.  If he had his way, there wouldn’t even be a conference tournament.

“I’m not a fan of the SEC Tournament, or any post-season conference tournament,” Earleywine said, describing it as “anticlimactic” and fatiguing.

Fatigue was a major factor in Missouri’s previous series against Arkansas, when the Razorbacks took two out of three games at University Field on national television.  The Tigers will play on Thursday May 8, at 3 p.m. at John Cropp Stadium.

Poor weather shortens Mizzou softball season

By Karl Roskamp

If you look at the Southeastern Conference softball standings, No. 11 Missouri is last in one major category.

The Tigers have played the fewest games this season by a large margin.  Missouri has played 40 games so far while conference foe Ole Miss has played the most games with 56.

“This season has been something completely out of the norm for us, and unfortunately something we could not control,” coach Ehren Earleywine said Thursday in a statement released by the Missouri Athletic Department.

Missouri has cancelled 14 games already this season, but hat they lose in terms of in-game experience, they’ve gained in valuable time practicing.

“We have scrimmaged against ourselves more than any other season, which is certainly not a bad thing,” Earleywine said.

The inclement weather is not expected to let up any time soon.  For Missouri’s series this weekend against No. 4 Tennessee,the national weather service rain on all three days.  According to Patrick Crawford, the team’s Assistant Director of Strategic Communications, if the games get rained out, they won’t be rescheduled.

“There would be no chance for makeup, nor would the SEC reschedule the games in any other circumstance,” Crawford said.  “Additional games across the conference have gone un-rescheduled, as well.”

Earleywine says at least the unpredictable weather has made for a compelling season.

“I don’t know if I’ve ever had as much drama as I’ve had this year between the weather and our pitching situation and trying to figure who we are as a team,” Earleywine said.

Mizzou’s Kinglsey is out for remainder of the season

By Karl Roskamp

Missouri's Kayla Kingsley (11) is helped off the field after injuring herself running the bases in the eighth inning in Sunday's game against Arkansas at University Field.

Missouri’s Kayla Kingsley (11) is helped off the field after injuring herself running the bases in the eighth inning in Sunday’s game against Arkansas at University Field.

Missouri sophomore Kayla Kingsley is out for the remainder of the season after suffering a knee injury during a game against Arkansas on Sunday afternoon.

“It was confirmed Monday evening that Kayla Kingsley suffered a significant knee injury in our Sunday game against Arkansas,” coach Ehren Earleywine said in a statement released by the Mizzou Athletic Department.  “She will not be available for the remainder of the season. Our coaches and training staff are ready to support her through to a speedy recovery.

Kingsley was injured during the eighth inning of the game.  With bases loaded and no outs, senior Nicole Hudson hit a line drive to Arkansas third basemen Chloe Oprzedek.  Oprzedek then tagged Kingsley out, who had slipped awkwardly trying to return to third base.

“(Kingsley’s absence) would take away a lot of speed,” Hudson said.  “She gets a lot of things going, so we’re just praying that she makes it out alright.”

“I think (Kingsley’s injury) sucked the life out of us,” shortstop Corrin Genovese said.  The Tigers failed to score in the inning and lost 11-10.

For the season, Kingsley batted .327 with three runs batted in. She was nine of 11 on stolen base attempts. Outfielder Carlie Rose is her most likely replacement.

Missouri will travel to Iowa to play a doubleheader on Wednesday, April 17, at Bob Pearl Field in Iowa City.

Offense carries Mizzou to win over Arkansas

By Karl Roskamp

The Missouri Tigers softball team shakes hands with the Arkansas softball team April 12, 2013 at University Field in Columbia Mo.

The Missouri Tigers softball team shakes hands with the Arkansas softball team on April 12, 2013 at University Field in Columbia Mo.

Kelsea Roth and Mackenzie Sykes combined for six hits and six runs batted in to lift No. 8 Missouri to a 9-0 run rule victory over Arkansas on Friday night at University Field.

The Tigers’ (24-4, 9-3 Southeastern Conference) victory came after two losses at Alabama last weekend. Junior Mackenzie Sykes said losing the series in Tuscaloosa was a motivating factor going into Friday’s game.

“As a team, we didn’t feel like we played that bad (against Alabama) but we wanted to come out here today and make sure we didn’t have a let down.”

Sykes had three hits in three at bats in the game, including a solo home run in the bottom of the third.  Sophomore Kelsea Roth had three hits too and four RBIs including a two-run home run in the bottom of the fifth inning to secure a run-rule victory.

“She drilled that ball, it was a line drive home run,” Sykes said of Roth’s home run.  “You can’t hit it any better than that.”

“I was just trying to save our pitching and hopefully get through the five innings so we can save Chelsea as much as we can,” Roth said.

The home run ended the game in the fifth inning and locked up career victory number 102 for Chelsea Thomas, the most in program history.

“That’s pretty special to be part of history for Mizzou softball,” Thomas said.  “I’m very grateful to be here and have a chance to do that.”

Thomas pitched four shutout innings, struck out five batters, allowed two hits and walked two hitters.  Thomas improved to a 15-3 record on the season. Senior Nicole Hudson finished the game by pitching the bottom of the fifth.  She did not allow any runs or hits, and walked one batter.  Even though she pitched one inning, coach Ehren Earleywine saw the value in her performance.

“That was big. Nicole coming probably saved (Thomas) 10 or 12 or 15 pitches,” Earleywine said.

Earleywine was not without apprehension coming into the game after how the Tigers played against Alabama.

“My worry was that she was going to come out guns a blazing and throwing the backside out of it,” he said. “She pitched under control for the most part and tried to locate and so we’re in a good position for tomorrow.”

Missouri will face Arkansas on Saturday at 2 p.m. at University Field.

Texas A&M Hits Four Home Runs, Defeats Mizzou

By Karl Roskamp

Texas A&M's Nicole Morgan celebrates the grand slam with her teammates as part of an eight-run sixth inning.

Texas A&M’s Nicole Morgan celebrates the grand slam with her teammates as part of an eight-run sixth inning.

Nicole Morgan and Mel Dumezich hit back-to-back home runs in the sixth inning to
give No. 7 Texas A&M an 11-3 victory over No. 5 Missouri on Saturday.

The Aggies were the first team to score multiple runs off Missouri pitcher, Chelsea Thomas, scoring five before she was
pulled. Texas A&M also managed seven hits and drew three walks.

“Around the fourth or fifth inning it looks like she lost some velocity in conjunction with that they’re a very good
hitting team,” coach Ehren Earleywine said. “It was just a freak thing. She didn’t have it.”

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