Softball falls to Missouri, 3-0, at Big 12 Championship
OKLAHOMA CITY -- The No. 18 Texas Softball team played five-plus innings of scoreless softball with No. 18 Missouri, before allowing three runs in the bottom of the sixth and falling to the Tigers, 3-0, Friday night at the Big 12 Conference Championship.
Texas' loss dropped the Horns to 33-18 on the year, while Missouri improved to 38-21 and advances to play second-seeded Oklahoma in the tournament semi-finals.
After 5.1 innings of scoreless play the Mizzou offense got things going in the bottom of the sixth, tallying three hits to claim a 3-0 advantage. Tigers' centerfielder Leanne Bowers started the rally with a single to leftfield and stole second base, before Sarah Stringer reached on a walk. Rightfielder Julie Silver followed with an RBI double down the rightfield line, scoring Bowers and moving Stringer to third.
Missouri tacked on two more runs in the frame, when a two-run single by Jen Bruck plated Stringer and Silver, to move the Tigers lead to 3-0. The Tigers sixth-inning rally proved to be the difference in the game, as Mizzou held the Horns scoreless for the duration.
Texas' junior righthander Meagan Denny (20-15) picked up the loss for UT, scattering five hits over 5.2 innings and striking out four. Bruck (20-8) earned the victory for the Tigers, tossing a complete game shutout, allowing just four hits and fanning five Longhorns.
MicKayla Padilla, Loryn Johnson, Kacie Gaskin and Brittany Chalk each registered a hit for a Longhorns offense that stranded five baserunners. Chalk's single in the fifth was the first of the freshman's career.
The Longhorns will now wait to learn their NCAA tournament destiny when the 64-team field is announced Sunday, May 13 at 2 p.m.
I think that was significant in this specific game because it would have helped open things up offensively. On the flip side of it, you need to credit Missouri, because they got the timely hitting and we didn't.
On Meagan Denny's performance: I thought her approach was very good tonight. I thought she did a good job playing pitch-to-pitch and didn't try to do too much. They got an opportunity and they capitalized on it. Overall, I thought she had a good performance.
Junior pitcher Meagan Denny