April 30, 2013
TIGERS VS. LEATHERNECKS
Game One: Wednesday, May 1 - 3 p.m.
Game Two: Wednesday, May 1 - 5 p.m.
Live Twitter: @MizzouSoftball
Live Radio: Mizzou Network (Gm. 1 | Gm. 2)
Television: Mediacom (Tape Delay)
Live Stats: GoLeathernecks.com
MIZZOU Media Notes
No. 11/11 Mizzou (29-9) continues on the road for a mid-week, non-conference doubleheader at Western Illinois (14-21) on Wednesday, May 1, in Macomb, Ill. The games are scheduled to begin at 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. at Mary Ellen McKee Stadium, with live radio coverage on the Mizzou Network.
Head coach Ehren Earleywine has led the Tigers to a 9-1 record against the Fighting Leathernecks in his time leading the Mizzou program. His teams have outscored WIU by a combined 57-14 in eight consecutive victories, including a six-inning, 8-0 win last season.
Mizzou sealed its series win at No. 19 Kentucky with a 7-0 shutout victory on Sunday, April 28, at John Cropp Stadium in Lexington, Ky. The Tigers were led by two-hit days from sophomore SS Corrin Genovese, sophomore 3B Angela Randazzo and senior catcher Jenna Marston. Two-time All-American pitcher Chelsea Thomas pitched 6.0 shutout innings in the victory, scattering three hits and two walks.
The initial win of the series at UK was obtained with a nine-inning, 2-1 victory on Friday, April 26. Senior Nicole Hudson did it all for Mizzou, first tying the game at 1-1 in the top of the seventh inning with an RBI single before smacking a game-winning solo home run in the top of the ninth. The home run was Hudson's 13th of the season.
The Tigers split a mid-week doubleheader against Western Kentucky on Wednesday, April 24, with the Tigers taking a 7-1 win in the second game. The Tigers were led in the doubleheader with two-hit outings from both sophomore SS Corrin Genovese and Marston. Hudson, the all-time program leader with 138 walks, set a career best for walks in a season with her 36th of 2013, passing her previous best of 35 from last season.
Thomas became Mizzou's all-time winningest pitcher with her performance in the 6-1 win at LSU (April 19), her 103rd career victory. She surpassed the 30-year old record of 102 set by Teresa Wilson from 1980-83. She earned win No. 105 and 106 with her weekend at efforts at No. 19 Kentucky.
Marston and Hudson are working their way up the all-time hits chart at Mizzou. Marston currently has 2011 hits, good for No. 6 in Mizzou's record book. Hudson has moved into the No. 10 all-time spot with 198 base knocks. Marston additionally moved into the school's top 10 for career at-bats, where she currently ranks ninth all-time with 647.
Hudson and 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 138 walks after recording 39 so far in 2013, while Marston follows at 131 with 22 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.
Hudson's season total of 39 walks, a career best, currently ranks fourth all-time at Mizzou. The program record of 46 was set by Marston last season.
FOLLOW THE ACTION VS. WESTERN ILLINOIS
Mizzou's doubleheader at Western Illinois will be covered with live radio on the Mizzou Network, with softball SID Patrick Crawford on the call. The games will have continual updates to the official Twitter of Mizzou Softball, @MizzouSoftball. Live statistics will be available at GoLeathernecks.com.
TIGERS VS. FIGHTING LEATHERNECKS
Mizzou holds an all-time series advantage of 26-4 against Western Illinois. The two squads first played in 1982, with the Fighting Leathernecks emerging victorious by a score of 1-0. The Tigers have eight-straight in the series, beginning with a 10-8 win in 2007 in Earleywine's first season.
SCOUTING WESTERN ILLINOIS
Western Illinois (14-21) is led offensively by the hot bat of sophomore shortstop Sammy Marshall, who is batting .479 and is the team's only batter hitting over .300. Marshall has been a threat on the base paths, going 29-31 in stolen bases.
The Fighting Leathernecks' pitching staff has compiled a season ERA of 5.11 with 141 strikeouts to 134 walks. Opposing batters are hitting .314 against WIU. Senior Kelsey Michelini has received the majority of the work for the team, pitching 132.2 innings to compile an 8-11 record with 4.33 ERA. She has issued 76 walks against 90 strikeouts.
The Tigers then return home to University Field for their final home regular season action, a three-game series against SEC foe Tennessee from Friday, May 3-Sunday, May 5. The Friday game starts at 6 p.m., while the Saturday, May 4, contest will be televised nationally by ESPN at 6:30 p.m. The series concludes with a noon first pitch on Sunday. The Saturday game will also be broadcast on KTGR.
Mizzou currently holds a No. 13 RPI (ratings percentage index) from the NCAA (April 29). The squad received a No. 5 ranking in the initial NCAA RPI of the 2013 season, released March 25. Last season, the Tigers began with a No. 15 RPI ranking.
HUDSON DOES IT AGAIN
Mizzou faced a 1-0 deficit heading into the seventh inning of its Friday, April 26, game at No. 19 Kentucky, but senior Nicole Hudson helped the Tigers take care of that, poking an RBI single out to left field to bring in the tying run. After a fruitless eighth in extra innings, Hudson launched her 13th home run of the season in the ninth inning to give Mizzou the go-ahead run that resulted in the final score of 2-1.
THE TWO-HIT TWO-STEP
Mizzou's two victories in the series win at No. 19 Kentucky were each powered by trios of two-hit performances. The initial nine-inning, 2-1 win on April 26, saw senior catcher Jenna Marston (2-for-3), senior Nicole Hudson (2-for-4) and junior OF Mackenzie Sykes (2-for-4) get multi-hit games. The series finale win (7-0) on April 28 had Marston (2-for-5), sophomore 3B Angela Randazzo (2-for-3) and sophomore SS Corrin Genovese (2-for-4) doing the work for the Tigers.
Three of the biggest bats in the SEC belong to Tigers. Senior 3B Nicole Hudson ranks sixth with her .750 overall slugging percentage, while sophomore 1B Kelsea Roth and sophomore 3B Angela Randazzo come in at seventh and 11th, respectively, with marks of .745 and .708. In conference action, Roth ranks second in RBI with 24 and fourth in slugging percentage (.738). Randazzo comes in third in RBI with 22. Roth is tied for third in the league in conference home runs (7).
Hudson and Roth, with 13 and 12 home runs, respectively in 2013, ranked tied for 20th and 29th in the NCAA in home runs per game (0.34, 0.32) on April 29. Randazzo ranked 20th in the nation in RBI per game, averaging 1.14.
Senior catcher Jenna Marston ranked second in the SEC in doubles, with seven in conference play. Crane is tied for seventh in overall games with 12 doubles.
As a team, Mizzou ranks first in runs scored in SEC games with 120. The Tigers are second in the SEC in conference games with a .297 batting average. Missouri's on-base percentage of .414 ranks second.
WELCOME TO TIGER PARK, Nicole Hudson!
Senior 3B Nicole Hudson did the heavy lifting in Mizzou's 3-2 win to clinch the series at LSU on April 21, hitting two home runs in a game for the third time in her career. Her two-run shot in the third inning and the following solo long ball in the fifth pushed her season total to 12 and her career amount to 42. The second home run hit the top of Tiger Park's scoreboard beyond the right field wall. Hudson batted 6-for-9 in the two wins at LSU.
ANOTHER STRONG PERFORMANCE FOR THOMAS
Senior pitcher Chelsea Thomas struck out 13 and 10 batters, respectively, in her two wins at No.11 LSU (April 19, 21). She also recently fanned 10 batters in the middle contest of the Arkansas series (April 13), pitching 11.0 innings. The number of games that the Pleasantville, Iowa, native has struck out 10+ batters has risen to 46 games out of 151 career appearances, essentially once every three times Thomas steps into the circle. Mizzou's record in those games is 38-8.
Thomas earned her fourth SEC Pitcher of the Week award for her efforts at LSU. With the recognition, Thomas leads all SEC players in weekly awards this season, as well as distancing herself from the rest of the conference's pitchers, with three league pitchers having two honors apiece.
NO WALKS? NO PROBLEM!
Senior pitcher Chelsea Thomas issued zero walks in her start of the 6-1 win at No. 11 LSU on April 19. For her career, she's completed this feat 38 times out of 138 starts. Mizzou holds an outstanding 35-3 record in those starts, holding its opponents to less than one run per game (0.92). In those 38 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.
SKY IS THE LIMIT
As previously mentioned, senior 3B Nicole Hudson and sophomore 1B Kelsea Roth both have smacked 13 and 12 home runs, respectively 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 43 four-baggers in her career, while Roth has hit 19. Joining them in the home run spree are sophomore 3B Angela Randazzo with eight and junior OF Mackenzie Sykes with seven. The previous season-best for both Randazzo and Sykes was two.
THOMAS IN FINAL 25 FOR PLAYER OF THE YEAR
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 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.