By: Emil Lippe, KCOU Sports
After a couple of very close losses to the Georgia Bulldogs in Athens last weekend, the Missouri Tigers claimed a much needed 3-2 victory over the Mississippi State Bulldogs on Friday night at University Field.
Tori Finucane was on the mound for Missouri and was solid through her four innings of work. The sophomore starter got two of the first four batters to strike out swinging. Finucane finished her outing with three strikeouts on the day.
For the Tiger offense, the bats didn’t come alive until the second inning when Corrin Genovese led off with a double down the third base line. The senior wasn’t standing at second base for long as Kelsea Roth smacked a single into left that sent Genovese to third. Kirsten Mack then got in on the action and sent Genovese home to give Missouri the early 1-0 lead.
Paige Lowary would relieve Finucane in the fifth inning. Finucane finished only allowing three hits and no runs on 92 pitches.
Lowary held down the hatches in the fifth inning, as she struck out consecutive batters to end the top half of the inning for the Tigers.
Missouri would reward Lowary with two insurance runs in the bottom of the fifth. Mack would hit a leadoff double to get things started. Natalie Fleming laid down a bunt next and would reach on an error by the Bulldog’s first baseman Erika Gaul. The error by Gaul moved Fleming over to second and Mack came home to score to make it 2-0 in favor of the Tigers. Another run would come home for Missouri when Emily Crane scored off of another error by the Bulldogs to make the score at the end of the fifth 3-0 for Mizzou.
The Bulldogs would make things very interesting once the seventh inning came around. After a leadoff walk, Julia Echols would single to right to put two runners on with none out. Caroline Seitz would reach on an infield single and after an error by Missouri’s own Roth, the score was 3-1 with runners on second and third base.
Mackenzie Toler would single in another run to make the score 3-2. Lowary delivered for the Tigers however and got her second save of the season after retiring the next two batters on a strikeout and a pop out to the shortstop.
With the win, Tori Finucane improves her record to 13-6, the Tigers improve their overall record to 25-9 and are now 7-6 in SEC play.
Missouri will look to claim the series against the Bulldogs on Saturday at 1 p.m. as they host game two of the three game, weekend series.