No. 8 Mizzou Ready for Weekend Series with Arkansas

MUTIGERS.COM
Senior pitcher Chelsea Thomas

MUTIGERS.COM
Senior pitcher Chelsea Thomas
MUTIGERS.COM

April 11, 2013

TIGERS VS. RAZORBACKS
Game One: Friday, April 12 - 6 p.m.
Game Two: Saturday, April 13 - 2 p.m. (Radio - KTGR)
Game Three: Sunday, April 14 - 2 p.m. (TV - ESPNU)
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LEADING OFF
No. 8/9 Mizzou (23-4, 8-3 SEC) host Southeastern Conference opponent Arkansas (25-16, 4-7 SEC) for a three-game weekend series, Friday, April 12-Sunday, April 14. The Sunday game at 2 p.m. will be televised nationally on ESPNU. The Friday and Saturday games are scheduled for 6 p.m. and 2 p.m. starts, respectively, with live coverage to subscribers on the Mizzou Network. Head coach Ehren Earleywine has led Mizzou to a 4-0 record against Arkansas in his time steering the Tiger program. Mizzou holds an all-time record of 5-2 against the Razorbacks.

RECENT SWINGS
• Senior pitcher Chelsea Thomas, a two-time All-American, was named a Top 25 finalist for the 2013 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year award, the ASA and USA Softball announced Wednesday, April 10. Thomas' inclusion in the 2013 Top 25 marks her third career USA Softball Top 25 recognition. Thomas was one of three overall finalists for the award in 2011 and also advanced to the final 25 finalists last season.

• Mizzou went 1-2 at No. 4 Alabama from Friday, April 5-Sunday, April 7, winning the Saturday, April 6, game by a score of 9-4. Thomas started all three of the Top 10 matchups in Tuscaloosa, Ala. Multi-hit games in the series were recorded by sophomore SS Corrin Genovese, freshman 2B Emily Crane, sophomore CF Kayla Kingsley, senior catcher Jenna Marston and redshirt freshman OF Carlie Rose.

• The Tigers swept their doubleheader at Missouri State on April 3, winning a five-inning, 12-0 game before taking a 7-0 result from the Bears. Mizzou smacked seven home runs in the two-game day, including four in the initial 12-0 win. Sophomore 3B Angela Randazzo continued her home run-hitting ways with a long ball in both of the Missouri State wins, including a three-run bomb in the first contest. Junior OF Mackenzie Sykes matched those efforts with two long balls of her own against Missouri State, as well as a home run in the 9-4 win at Alabama (April 6).

MIZZOU MILESTONES
• Thomas earned her 101st career win at Mizzou with her pitching performance at No. 4 Alabama in the 9-4 win on Saturday, April 6. With her earlier 100th win, she became just the second Tiger to reach the 100-win plateau. Thomas' next pitching victory will tie her with Teresa Wilson (1980-83) for the program record of 102 victories.

• Senior 3B Nicole Hudson and catcher Jenna Marston are in a tight race to be Mizzou's all-time walks leader by season's end. Hudson is currently Mizzou's all-time leader with 127 walks after recording 28 so far in 2013, while Marston follows at 123 with 14 this season. Marston originally surpassed former standout Jen Bruck's former No. 1 mark of 115 (2005-08) with her 116th walk in the fifth inning of Mizzou's 12-0 (5) win at Ole Miss on March 17.

• Marston's next hit will be her 200th as a Tiger. Marston would become the seventh player in Mizzou's program history to reach the mark.

FOLLOW THE ACTION VS. ARKANSAS
Mizzou's series vs. Arkansas will have a nationally televised game in the Sunday, 2 p.m., matchup (ESPNU) at University Field. The Friday (6 p.m.) and Saturday (2 p.m.) games will have live coverage to subscribers on the Mizzou Network. Additionally, KTGR will have a radio broadcast of the Saturday contest. The series will have continual updates to the official Twitter of Mizzou Softball, @MizzouSoftball. Live statistics will be provided at MUTigers.com.

TIGERS VS. RAZORBACKS
• Mizzou has handled Arkansas in the all-time series, holding a 5-2 advantage. The Tigers shutout the Razorbacks with a 4-0 win last season in Fayetteville, Ark., using 4.0 innings of no-hit, no-run pitching from a then-junior Thomas in the circle. She struck out seven Razorbacks.

• Earleywine has posted a pristine 4-0 mark against Arkansas in his time leading the Tigers, outscoring the Razorbacks by a combined 30-3 in those games. Mizzou's biggest win over Arkansas came on March 9, 2011, with a five-inning, 12-0 victory.

SCOUTING ARKANSAS
• Arkansas has played to a 26-15 overall record and 4-8 mark in SEC action. The team has batted .297 with 52 doubles, eight triples and 46 home runs. A significant portion of those home runs come from sophomore infielder Devon Wallace, who has hit 12 in 2013. The Razorback slugger has led the NCAA in walks this season with 52 and is second in on-base percentage (.626).

• Two Razorbacks are batting over .400 overall in freshman outfielder Stephanie Canfield (.418) and junior infielder Clarisa Navarro (.402). Navarro leads the squad in doubles with nine.

• Four pitchers have seen significant time in the circle for Arkansas, with senior Chelsea Cohen leading the way with 111.0 innings pitched for a 12-7 record and 2.65 ERA. Opposing batters are hitting .278 against the Razorback hurler. Freshman Kimmy Beasley has logged the second-most amount of pitching time with 67.0 innings, recording a 5-6 record and 2.72 ERA. UA's staff has allowed a collective 2.46 ERA and .230 opposing batting average.

ON DECK
The Tigers hit the road for a mid-week doubleheader at Iowa on Wednesday, April 17, with start times of 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. Mizzou then heads to LSU for a weekend series from Friday, April 19-Sunday, April 21. The Friday and Saturday matchups are set for 6 p.m., while the Sunday finale is scheduled for 1 p.m.

NCAA RPI
Mizzou currently holds a No. 14 RPI (ratings percentage index) from the NCAA (April 8). The squad received a No. 5 ranking in the initial NCAA RPI of the 2013 season, released Monday, March 25. Last season, the Tigers began with a No. 15 RPI ranking.

MIZZOU IN TOP 10 FOR 10TH-STRAIGHT WEEK, MATCHING PROGRAM-BEST
Mizzou was ranked eighth and ninth in the country by the USA Today/NFCA Division I Top 25 and ESPN.com/USA Softball Collegiate Top 25 polls, respectively, on Tuesday, April 9, putting the squad in the Top 10 for the 10th-straight poll to match a program best. Head coach Ehren Earleywine also led Mizzou to a 10-poll stay in the Top 10 rankings from the final poll of the 2009 season (June 9 - No. 8/8) to the Week 8 poll of the 2010 season (April 6 - No. 7/8).

KINGSLEY KILLS IT AT ALABAMA
Sophomore OF Kayla Kingsley was all over the base paths in Mizzou's 9-4 win at No 4 Alabama on Saturday, April 6, batting 3-for-3 with three singles. The hit output set a new career-high for the speedy Tiger, and she showed it with her base-running by matching a career-best with two stolen bases.

ROTH AND SYKES GO BACK-TO-BACK
Sophomore 1B Kelsea Roth and junior OF Mackenzie Sykes helped the Tigers distance themselves from the fourth-ranked Crimson Tide in its 9-4 victory (April 6), hitting back-to-back home runs in the top of the seventh inning. Roth's shot straight out to center field was a two-run blast that also scored senior IF Princess Krebs. Sykes followed with the freshly clean bases and laced a sharp, solo long ball out over the right center field wall, setting the score at 9-0.

BOMBS AWAY
• Two Tigers top the SEC in overall slugging percentage in sophomore 3B Angela Randazzo (.902) and senior 3B Nicole Hudson (.866) after 27 games played. Sophomore 1B Kelsea Roth follows in fourth with a .846 mark. Hudson and Roth are tied at 11th in the league with 10 home runs each. Hudson also is third in the conference in on-base percentage (.546). Freshman 2B Emily Crane ranks tied for 11th in the SEC in batting average with a .400 mark. Crane is also tied for seventh in doubles (10).

• As a team, Mizzou tops the SEC in conference games with a .315 batting average. In overall games, the Tigers are ranked second in slugging percentage with a .595 mark. Mizzou's .335 batting average in overall games ranks second, as well as its .427

RADICAL RANDAZZO!
• Sophomore 3B Angela Randazzo ranked 10th in the SEC with 37 RBI on April 7 with 25 games played in 2013. By comparison, league leader Paige Wilson of Georgia has 47 RBI in 40 games played. Randazzo's RBI total already dwarfs her 2012 total of 13.

• Randazzo made it five home runs in a four-game span with her two long balls in the Missouri State doubleheader (April 3). In game one, she batted 2-for-3 with four RBI from a three-run home run and RBI double in the incredible 10-run top of the fifth for Mizzou. She batted 2-for-3 again in game two, hitting a solo home run and single.

• The three run-rule wins for Mizzou in the South Carolina series (March 29-30) had help from Randazzo, who batted 5-for-7 with three home runs, one double and nine RBI for the weekend. Her two home runs and five RBI in the five-inning, 12-3 victory over the Gamecocks (March 30) both set new career-bests. Her back-to-back two-hit outings in the doubleheader also matched career-bests.

SKY IS THE LIMIT
As previously mentioned, senior 3B Nicole Hudson and sophomore 1B Kelsea Roth have both smacked 10 home runs thus far in 2013. The two big swingers have already surpassed their 2012 (61 games) totals in long balls, during which both recorded seven apiece. Hudson has blasted 40 four-baggers in her career, while Roth has hit 16. Joining them in the home run spree are sophomore 3B Angela Randazzo with eight and junior OF Mackenzie Sykes with six. The previous season-best for both Randazzo and Sykes was two.

THE BALL HAS LEFT THE BUILDING
In Mizzou's five-inning, 12-0 win over Missouri State on Wednesday, April 3, the Tigers hit four home runs. Mizzou also matched that feat in the 16-0 victory over Georgia Tech on March 23. The long ball total was the most in a game since Mizzou hit five in the squad's season-opening, five-inning, 11-3 win at UC Santa Barbara on Feb. 15.

RUNAWAY TIGERS
The previously mentioned 16-run total for Mizzou in its closing victory of the Georgia Tech doubleheader on Saturday, March 23, was a significant amount. The Tigers' 16 runs were the most in a game since Mizzou won 16-0 over Drake on April 2, 2008.

WHAT A STREAK!
Mizzou put together a 12-game winning streak from March 13-April 13, beginning with a 3-1 win the first game of the Evansville doubleheader and ending with a 7-0 shutout in the second game of the Missouri State doubleheader, the longest streak in the SEC at the time, outscoring its opponents 109-10 in that stretch. During the twelve wins, Mizzou built the following statistical advantages:
• Outhit its opponents 109-38
• Blasted 49 extra-base hits against seven for its foes
• Hit 21 home runs to just one opponent long ball
• Earned 59 walks, while Tiger opponents have walked 12 times
• Struck out 80 opposing batters, while Tigers have struck out only 20 times (Chelsea Thomas fanned 64 of those batters)

CLEAR THE BASES
• Sophomore 1B Kelsea Roth hit her second grand slam of the season in the first inning of Mizzou's six-inning, 10-2 win over South Carolina (March 29). The blast, her ninth home run of the season, opened the scoring for the game.

• In back-to-back games of the Georgia Tech doubleheader (March 23), a Tiger hit a grand slam. In the five-inning, 8-0 win to start the day, sophomore 3B Angela Randazzo hit her grand slam during the six-run second inning. The blast was her third home run of the season. Senior Rachel Hay's grand slam, her second home run of the season, came in Mizzou's six-run second inning of the five-inning, 16-0 victory in the second game.

• Roth hit Mizzou's first grand slam of the 2013 season came in the five-inning, 13-1 victory over Maryland (Feb. 21). The four-run shot helped power a nine-run second inning that distanced the Tigers from the Terrapins. Coincidentally, Roth was previously the last Mizzou player to hit a grand slam in 2012. Her second-to-last long ball of her seven-home run freshman campaign cleared the bases at Iowa State on April 28.

DOUBLES? WE'VE GOT YOUR DOUBLES
In Mizzou's 6-1 victory at Ole Miss on March 16, the Tigers smacked six doubles as a team. It was the squad's best double-hitting performance in more than one year, with Mizzou hitting six against Alcorn State on March 9, 2012.

NO WALKS? NO PROBLEM!
• Senior pitcher Chelsea Thomas issued zero walks in all three of her starts at Ole Miss (March 15-17), as well as in game one of the Georgia Tech doubleheader (March 23) and her second start of the Missouri State doubleheader (April 3). For her career, she's completed this feat 37 times out of 131 starts. Mizzou holds an outstanding 34-3 record in those starts, holding its opponents to less than one run per game (0.94). In those 37 outings, opposing batters average 0.41 hits per inning against the senior Tiger. Thomas is pitching "zero-walk starts" in roughly one out of every four starts in her career.

• For her efforts at Ole Miss, Thomas earned her third SEC Pitcher of the Week honor (March 11-17). In her four starts during the week, she struck out 1.22 batters per inning for a total of 22 strikeouts over 18.0 innings pitched. Thomas finished the week with a 0.78 ERA.

COMBINED NO-HITTERS
• Two-time All-American pitcher Chelsea Thomas received a helping hand from fellow seniors Nicole Hudson and Lindsey Muller to complete two combined no-hitters in Mizzou's first and third wins of the Ole Miss series, both five-inning affairs. In the 11-0 win on March 15, Thomas threw 2.0 innings and struck out four Rebels to start the game, with Hudson pitching 3.0 innings for the win, fanning four. To close the series on March 17, Thomas completed 3.0 innings of work for the win, again striking out four. Muller finished the Rebels off with 2.0 innings pitched and three strikeouts.

• The two combined efforts were Thomas' 12th and 13th no-hitters of her outstanding Tiger career. The two results were the 36th and 37th no-hitters in Mizzou history.

ANOTHER STRONG PERFORMANCE FOR THOMAS
Senior pitcher Chelsea Thomas notched a one-hitter performance in Mizzou's 2-0 win over No. 7 Texas A&M on Friday, March 8. The Pleasantville, Iowa, native struck out 11 batters in the win, her second complete-game shutout of the season. Thomas went the distance again in Mizzou's 5-1 win over Evansville (7.0 IP), striking out 10 batters. The number of games that Thomas has struck out 10+ batters has risen to 43 games out of 144 career appearances, essentially once every three times Thomas steps into the circle.

CAN YOU BE PERFECT?
• Sophomore SS Corrin Genovese batted 2-for-2 in the April 5 game at No. 4 Alabama, smacking two singles and drawing a walk. Sophomore OF Kayla Kingsley followed with a 3-for-3 performance in the 9-4 win over the Crimson Tide (April 6), hitting three singles with two runs scored, one RBI and two stolen bases.

• Freshman 2B Emily Crane and redshirt freshman OF Carlie Rose both hit 3-for-3 in the opening game (12-0 [5]) of the Missouri State doubleheader on April 3. Crane hit her second home run of the season, along with a double and single for two RBI. Rose smacked three singles in the game.

• Junior OF Mackenzie Sykes batted 2-for-2 in the initial game of the March 30 doubleheader vs. South Carolina, knocking two singles for one RBI while also drawing one walk.

• Genovese and redshirt freshman OF Taylor Gadbois both batted 2-for-2 in Mizzou's five-inning, 16-0 win over Georgia Tech on March 23. One of Genovese's hits was a home run, a two-run blast that was the fifth of her career.

• Senior 3B Nicole Hudson batted 2-for-2 against Ole Miss in the 11-0 win on March 15, also drawing two walks to reach base in every plate appearance. Hudson hit a double and home run against the Rebels. She also ripped off a perfect 3-for-3 performance in the Tigers' 5-4 setback in the initial game of their doubleheader at Cal State Fullerton (Feb. 23). She hit her sixth home run of the season, along with two singles to score two runs and record one RBI.

• Sophomore 3B Angela Randazzo hit 2-for-2 in Mizzou's 11-0 win over Ole Miss, hitting a double and triple to record four RBI (matching a career-high). She was hit by an Ole Miss pitch in between her hits, reaching base in every plate appearance.

• Crane posted a 2-for-2 performance with a double and a single in Mizzou's five-inning, 12-0 victory over Ole Miss on March 17. She also drew a walk.

• Senior catcher Jenna Marston batted 2-for-2 in Mizzou's 3-1 win over Evansville in game one of the teams' doubleheader on March 13. The St. Louis native ripped a first inning single and a leadoff double in the third inning before getting hit by a pitch in the fifth inning.

• Senior 1B Lindsey Muller batted a pristine 4-for-4 in Mizzou's 12-1 win over UCSB on Feb. 17, hitting three singles and blasting a two-run home run. The four hits set a new career-high for the Tiger. Muller finished the game with three RBI.

 

 

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