May 28, 2009

Courtesy of Missouri Athletics

Oklahoma City, Okla. - Making their first appearance in 15 years at the Women's College World Series, the 11th-ranked Tigers (50-11) suffered an opening round, 7-3, loss to ninth-ranked Arizona State (47-17) at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City, Okla. The Tigers managed only four hits on the day, both extra base knocks, but faltered in the field, accounting for two errors.

Arizona State jumped out to an early lead hanging six runs on six hits through two innings. Freshman pitcher Chelsea Thomas (Pleasantville, Iowa) struggled in the circle, and was relieved at the start of the third by senior right-handed hurler Stacy Delaney (Freeland, Mich.). Delaney went right to work, throwing nine strikes in her first 13 pitches. By close of the game, Delaney forced two strikeouts and allowed seven hits in four innings of work.

Missouri scored a single run in the top of the third. Rightfielder Marla Schweisberger (Raytown, Mo.) reached base on a leadoff single to short, scoring on a two out double to center by sophomore Rhea Taylor (Buford, Ga.). Taylor rounded second and made her way to third, but was thrown out sliding into third to end the inning.

The Tigers attempted a sixth inning rally, loading the bases for three hole hitter Kathryn Poet (Tujunga, Calif.). Poet reached base on a fielder's choice that left leadoff pinch hitter Julie Silver (Chesterfield, Mo.) out at home. Cleanup batter Micaela Minner (Sanger, Texas) was next to the plate and drove in one run, Taylor, with her groundout to second base.

Mizzou added a run in the top of the seventh when Schweisberger connected on a bomb to cut the deficit to four runs but Arizona State held on for the 7-3 victory.

With the loss Missouri falls to the loser's bracket and will take on Georgia at 11 a.m. on Saturday, May 30, with the game televised live on ESPN.