Mack Plays for the Union Jack (July 22)

After her first season playing for Mizzou Softball, catcher Kirsten Mack is off on an even more exciting adventure! The soon-to-be sophomore Tiger will be playing with Great Britain's U-19 National Team at the European Junior Women's Championships from July 21-26 in Rosmalen, Holland. Mack will have blog entries for over the next week.

Mizzou fans can follow along with the ECJW 2014 online here.

Hello again, I'm back! But now... I am in Holland!

During the last blog, myself and the Great Britain U-19 team were still in England and getting ready to head out for our last morning of training on Saturday. So on Saturday, we just did a light batting practice and did a lot of stretching and recovery. Then we went back to the hotel and got ready for a fun afternoon in London. Our hotel was near a train station, and the nice thing about London is you can buy a day pass that covers all public transportation. At the subway station, we got split into teams and were told we were doing a scavenger hunt around London!

The subway ride was about a 10-minute ride into Paddington Station. This is a massive subway station that is almost like an airport terminal. Once we got to Paddington, the race was on and all the teams split up. We had about 28 challenges that included all the famous sites of London. We went to Buckingham Palace, St. Andrews Cathedral, The London Eye, Big Ben, Downey Street and so many others. It was such an amazing afternoon and I was able to see practically every tourist spot in central London.

When we got back to Paddington Station to meet up with the other teams, we looked at all of our pictures (you had to document everything with a photograph) and my group was the winner! We were able to complete 24 of the 28 challenges in just about four hours. Overall, it was such an amazing afternoon spent with my team.

On Sunday, we packed up everything and caught a quick 35-minute flight into Amsterdam. Once we got into Amsterdam, we had about an hour ride to Rosmalen, which is where the tournament and our team hotel are located. But where we are staying is not really like a hotel at all! It is this huge house with a bunch of dorm-style rooms, sitting on a farm. There is a lot of open space to lounge around outside, or play volleyball and football (or soccer as us Americans know it).

Yesterday, Monday, we had an early morning leaving our "farm dorm" at 8:30 a.m. to get to the fields early enough to figure out how everything was going to work. Our first game of the tournament was against Serbia. We came out swinging our bats and put up 13 runs in the first inning! We ended up winning by run-rule in three innings, but it was so awesome to be able to play Serbia because of their story.  It really brought into perspective how lucky we are in the United States. The Serbian team comes from a very war-torn country, and just being able to get the funding to come here was such blessing for them. Yes, they were down after the first inning, but that did not matter to them. They were just so stoked to even be there. It was very cool to be a part of that.

We were supposed to have a one-game break, but that ended up turning into a four-hour rain delay. The field guys did an amazing job getting the fields playable, and we were able to start our second game against Belgium around 5:45 p.m. By the third inning, the rain was pouring again and the umpires had to call it. We left the game up 4-0 and will resume play Wednesday morning. The weather is looking much nicer for the rest of the week, so that is positive!

Anyways, we continue playing hopefully the rest of this week, finishing off our game with Belgium and then we play Germany. After that it goes into a bracket, so it will depend on winners and losers of other games. We are looking very strong and hoping to have one of the best finishes in Great Britain history!

MIZ! ...GB!


Mack Plays for the Union Jack (July 18)

After her first season playing for Mizzou Softball, catcher Kirsten Mack is off on an even more exciting adventure! The soon-to-be sophomore Tiger will be playing with Great Britain's U-19 National Team at the European Junior Women's Championships from July 21-26 in Rosmalen, Holland. Mack will have blog entries for over the next week.

Hey Mizzou fans! I hope you're all having a great summer!

Wow! It has been quite a whirlwind these past three days. Traveling all the way to London to play for my country is such a tremendous honor. Some of you may be wondering how I am able to play for Great Britain since I was born in the United States. Well, my dad was born and raised in Scotland and moved to the U.S. when he was an adult. Because of his citizenship, I am able apply for and gain citizenship in Great Britain! The cool thing is that I have my normal U.S. passport, as well as a British passport!

My long, long trek to London started on Tuesday morning when I left my house in California. It started out with a four-hour plane ride to Houston, followed by a nine-hour flight from Houston to London. I left California at 10 a.m., Tuesday, and got into London at 10 a.m., Wednesday. On top of that, from California to London is a nine-hour time difference. That made for a very exhausting two days of travel!

Once I got to London, a couple of my new teammates picked me up from the airport and brought me to one of their houses. I was able to get a little rest since I hadn't slept in over 24 hours. That same day (yes, this is still Wednesday!), we drove to our hotel accommodations in Slough, England, unpacked really quickly and got ready to go to the softball fields. We did some cool softball-related, team-bonding activities so we could get to know each other. Finally around 9 p.m., we got back to the hotel and as soon as I hit my bed, I was asleep. I have never been so tired in my entire life!

The past two days of training (Thursday and earlier today) have been long and exhausting, but very necessary! Unfortunately, it has been England's hottest two days all year the past two days.

Being that we have girls from Australia, Italy, the United States and Great Britain, we all do things a little differently. Trying to come together and mesh as a team in five days is quite the task, but we are all in it for one thing... to qualify for the World Championships next year. The team has a lot of talent and we are already looking really sharp. We have six pitchers and tons of different options in the field.

Also, the team gets along great! I can't believe I have only known my teammates for two days because it seems like I have known them for much longer. They have all been so inviting to us "foreigners", and we love to talk about the differences in our countries. The Great Britain natives always talk about how they love our American accents, and I think that is so weird that they say I have an accent.  We love to argue about which country is right and which country is wrong when it comes to pronunciations of words.  It is really interesting to discuss the differences in our softball, schooling and social life between all the different countries.

Anyways, it has been an absolutely amazing three days, so far, and tomorrow we get to take the afternoon off from training and go into London. I can't wait to share the rest of my trip with you all. Thanks for reading!


TGIF: Thank Genovese It's Friday (July 18)

Mizzou Softball's First Team All-SEC infielder Corrin Genovese has a knack for making "GIF-worthy" plays. What is a "GIF"? GIF (graphics interchange format) is a common way to share images on the Internet, often times coming in the form of animation. Why would we need an animation? Highlights! And Genovese creates plenty of them.

SETTING THE STAGE: The Columbia Regional (May 16-18) started with a riveting game between No. 16 Mizzou and Bradley on May 16. The Braves stormed back in the top of the seventh to wipe away a 4-0 Tiger lead, replacing it with a 5-4 BU advantage. Mizzou tied the game, 5-5, in the bottom of the inning to force extras. The tying run was Genovese, who doubled and was scored with a sacrifice fly by teammate Kirsten Mack.

THE PLAY: So then there was the tense eighth inning, and of course, there was Genovese's glove. The second out the Tigers needed to keep the Braves off the base paths was snagged on an outstanding play by the shortstop. 

THE OUTCOME: Mizzou went on to win, 6-5, with the game-winning RBI-single coming from, you guessed it, Genovese. That is a GIF for another day (well, a Friday)...

THE GIF: Enjoy!

TGIF: Thank Genovese It's Friday (July 3)

Mizzou Softball's First Team All-SEC infielder Corrin Genovese has a knack for making "GIF-worthy" plays. What is a "GIF"? GIF (graphics interchange format) is a common way to share images on the Internet, often times coming in the form of animation. Why would we need an animation? Highlights! And Genovese creates plenty of them.

SETTING THE STAGE: In its second game of NCAA Regional action at University Field (May 17), No. 16 Mizzou was looking to close out a victory over Kansas to move to 2-0 in the regional. With a 5-1 lead, the Tigers were in control, but the Jayhawks had loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the sixth inning.

THE PLAY: Of course, that's when Genovese showed her face (glove, actually). The Tiger shortstop coolly handled a ground ball up the middle of the infield, tapped second base and threw to fellow junior Kelsea Roth, who was stretching perfectly at first base. The smooth operation was the double play Mizzou needed to end the inning and keep Kansas cornered.

THE OUTCOME: Mizzou went on to win, 6-3, and the victory proved to be the final triumph of the season for the Tigers. A crowd of more than 1,000 packed the U-Field stands to see the action.

THE GIF: Enjoy... and Happy Fourth of July!

Burg Blog #2

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Greetings everyone and welcome to Burg Blog No. 2. Due to the outpour of positive feedback, I'm back at it again for another post.

Now, I know most of you only want to know about the doings in my own life (since I'm the most interesting member of the team of course), but this edition will mostly be about my teammates. All of whom don't read this; so this should be fun. Starting with the newcomers...

TGIF: Thank Genovese It's Friday (June 20)

Mizzou Softball's First Team All-SEC infielder Corrin Genovese has a knack for making "GIF-worthy" plays. What is a "GIF"? GIF (graphics interchange format) is a common way to share images on the Internet, often times coming in the form of animation. Why would we need an animation? Highlights! And Genovese creates plenty of them.

SETTING THE STAGE: A prime time matchup came to University Field on Thursday, May 1, when No. 13 Mizzou Softball hosted No. 6 Alabama. The entire nation was able to watch as closely as the fans in the stands, with the SEC contest airing on ESPN.

THE PLAY: Genovese's #WebGem play came in a stretch of two-straight 1-2-3 innings for the Tigers' defense. After nothing in the third inning for Alabama, the trend was continued into the fourth with Genovese's impressive slide and throw from her knees for the second out. The play was completed with an outstanding stretch and scoop by first baseman Kelsea Roth.

THE OUTCOME: Mizzou went on to win, 8-6, but needed an exciting spurt of three runs in the sixth inning to secure the victory. Genovese walked to lead off the inning and was doubled in by freshman Natalie Fleming to score the game-tying run. Ashtin Stephens came speeding in behind Genovese to give Mizzou a 7-6 lead.

THE GIF: Enjoy...

#MIZ #USA Update (June 20)


USA Softball's 2014 Selection Camp finished its exhibition schedule with two more wins on Thursday night (June 19) in Purcellville, Va., sweeping a doubleheader against the Virginia All-Stars. The Red, White and Blue downed its opponent with 12-0 and 4-1 victories. 

Former Mizzou standouts Nicole Hudson and Rhea Taylor both figured into the second win of the night, the 4-1 result against the Virginia All-Stars.

Game Two (USA 4, VA 1)
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Team USA ripped 15 hits in its 12-0 win to start the doubleheader, but base knocks were at more of a premium in Game Two. Hudson and Taylor each added singles to Team USA's nine-hit effort.

The final roster for the 17-athlete 2014 USA Softball Women's National Team will be announced on June 22 on

#MIZ #USA Blog Entries

Blog: Mizzou Seniors Prep For Upcoming Gymnastics Camps

This summer, Mizzou gymnastics is set to host two camp sessions at the Tiger Performance Complex. Head coach Shannon Welker, in addition to assistant coaches John Carney and Casey Jo Magee will lead the charge in the June and July camps.

Mizzou Athletics sat down with the five soon-to-be Tigers senior gymnasts, and gathered their thoughts on the upcoming camps as well as reminiscing about their own personal experiences with gymnastics camps as a young aspiring gymnast.

Katelyn, you're entering your final season with Mizzou gymnastics. How does it feel to help out so many young aspiring gymnasts over these past years in Columbia?

Katelyn Trevino: Over the years of teaching camp for Mizzou, it has taught me so many things! At first, it was an odd transition going from being a young camper who looked up to the college gymnasts and coaches, to actually being in that opposite role. Initially, it's confusing. Like, "How did I suddenly become a role model to these young girls?" But then you learn to embrace the role and platform you've been given to inspire and impact the lives of these young gymnasts' shoes that you were once in.

It's really awesome to see that cycle, and to have the opportunity to be in an influential position to motivate young girls and be lights in their lives. It also pushes all of us to a higher standard and accountability level. You have to constantly ask yourself, what kind of role model did I want to look up to and what advice/encouragement did I wish I had when I was their age? It's really been an awesome privilege to be a part of something that has a big impact on these young gymnasts' lives and I know I can speak for all of us when I say that we are really grateful to get to be a part of this program's camp!

Rebecca, this will be your fourth Mizzou gymnastics camp. What are your personal goals to teach to the campers this upcoming weekend?

Rebecca Johnson: I'd say something we really want to instill in the minds of the campers is the importance of encouraging your teammates and having a positive attitude. There's so much more to gymnastics than just flips. It's about dedication, perseverance, passion, and working through tough days. It's so awesome when you have teammates and friends to cheer you on and keep everyone's spirits high, and I think that is the ideal environment we're trying to create at our camps.

We want the kids to know that it's okay to fall, it's okay to fail, it's okay to get frustrated for a second, but the way they get back up and keep going is what builds character and that will make them better gymnasts in the end. Above all, we want camp to be a total blast for each girl that comes and for them to want to go back to their home gyms and work harder than ever before!

Laura, what's it like to give back to the local Columbia community in events like this weekend's Mizzou gymnastics camp?

Laura Kappler: I really love working camps like ours, because the kids look up to us as collegiate gymnasts and they look forward to spending a long weekend with us. I think sometimes we get caught up in our own personal busy schedules, so it's fun to teach little kids who are full of energy and ready to learn from us because we can serve as their role models.

There has been a couple times following camp where I've been out at the store and a camper I worked with remembered me and they ran up and gave me a hug. I think I'm just a normal person, but to these little girls we are more than just normal. I really appreciate the opportunity I have to coach and teach during these camps!

Rachel, what do you recall from your own camp sessions you attended back in the day? What fun activities / positives stood out the most as you continued to learn the sport?

Rachel Updike: When I was younger I was on the U.S. National Team. Every year there were camps held for the national team members at Karolyi's Ranch. I enjoyed meeting new teammates and even international gymnasts. My favorite part about the camps were how it was always challenging having elite athletes working hard with you every day. This motivated me to push harder to achieve my goals. Also being mentored by coaches other than your own allowed you to hear different corrections from different coaches and their perspectives. I really believe that it's important to hear those corrections from other people because it gives you something else to focus on to improve your gymnastics.

Lastly, camps were always a blast outside of the gym as well! I remember walking around the ranch and seeing all of Bela Karolyi's animals, swimming and playing games in the cabins with all the girls. Camps are really a time for making memories and new friends! Although they are hard work, you will learn a lot of gymnastics and I promise it's all worth it!

Briana, what message do you have for this weekend's campers and also for the second session campers set to arrive in Columbia in July?

Briana Conkle: I'm really excited to see what the first camp session has in store for us. I think the campers should come in with a positive attitude and a willingness to work attitude. Camp is all about having fun while also getting some work done.

Campers should have goals in mind of what they want to accomplish while attending camp this week. They should also be ready to have some FUN! We can't wait to help these girls accomplish their goals and take away some valuable information and lessons. We LOVE hard working groups! July campers should have the same mentality of coming in ready to work hard and having fun!

#MIZ #USA Update (June 18)


USA Softball was back in action last night (June 17) in Findlay, Ohio, winning a doubleheader against the Ohio All-Stars (3-0, 5-0). USA Softball's selection camp invitees continued their exhibition tour as the 2014 roster announcement date (Sunday, June 22) approaches.

Former Mizzou standouts Nicole Hudson and Rhea Taylor appeared in Game One of the doubleheader sweep, with both victories largely dictated by Team USA's pitching. The Ohio All-Stars recorded just two hits and one walk in Team USA's 3-0 victory

Game One (USA 3, OHIO 0)
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Team USA broke through with two runs in the fourth inning, the second of which was driven in by Taylor on a groundout. The scored run was Hudson, who was on base after an error by the Ohio All-Stars.
Taylor recorded an infield single towards third base in the sixth inning.

The Red, White and Blue plays its final exhibition doubleheader on Thursday, June 19, vs. the Virginia All-Stars. Game time is set for 6:30 p.m. ET in Purcellville, Va. Ticket info can be found here.

#MIZ #USA Blog Entries

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