The No. 11 Missouri softball team suffered its second loss of the season to No. 22 Nebraska 6-4, but rebounded by defeating No. 5 Washington 2-0 on Saturday at the Cathedral City Classic in Palm Springs, Calif.
Senior right-hander Kristin Nottelmann took the mound for the Tigers (5-2) in the first game of the day and allowed seven hits but only two earned runs. After the Huskers shut down the Tigers in the top of the first, they grabbed one run on two hits to take an early lead.
The struggles continued for Missouri’s defense in the second inning. After Nottelmann walked the first two batters, a single to right field loaded the bases. Junior shortstop Princess Krebs mishandled a grounder by the next batter and Nebraska drove in another run to extend its lead to 2-0. Another defensive error by Missouri let another run score before the inning ended with one hit, two runs and two errors.
The Tigers finally got things going offensively in the top of the third. After junior designated player Lindsey Muller singled and was moved up by a sacrifice bunt, freshman second baseman Corrin Genovese roped an inside-the-park home run. It marked her first slam of the season and cut Nebraska’s lead to 3-2.
In the bottom of the fourth, the Huskers put on a runner with two outs after Missouri committed an infield error. After a pop-up dropped in shallow left field, Nebraska’s catcher Taylor Edwards singled in the base runner, leaving runners on first and third before Missouri made its fourth error of the game and allowed Nebraska to increase its lead to 5-2.
In the bottom of the seventh, there was a flicker of hope for Missouri. Junior catcher Jenna Marston started off the inning with a single before Genovese walked and senior right fielder Ashley Fleming knocked a hit to center field to load up the bases. Freshman first baseman Kelsea Roth blasted a double to the wall that drove in two more runs. The Tigers couldn’t pull it off, though, and fell to the Huskers 6-4.
Missouri’s second game of the day was a success as redshirt junior pitcher Chelsea Thomas threw her eighth career no-hitter against No. 5 Washington.
The game remained scoreless through two innings before Missouri put up runs in the top of the second. Freshman second baseman Ashtin Stephens singled and then Marston tripled to bring her home. Genovese knocked in Marston with a sacrifice fly and Missouri led 2-0 after three innings.
The Huskies did show an offensive threat in the fourth when an error, a sacrifice bunt and a wild pitch moved a runner to third to start the inning, but the Tiger defense pulled way out of it and the Huskies remained scoreless.
A sliding catch in the sixth saved Thomas’ no-hitter. The game ended with the Tigers defeating the Huskies 2-0 in seven innings. Thomas had eight strikeouts.
Missouri will face Northwestern and No. 7 UCLA on Sunday to end its play in Palm Springs.