Bears Battle Back for Split at Missouri Coaches vs Cancer Tournament
March 1, 2014
CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. - The Missouri State softball team (11-4) got four runs batted in from senior Heather Duckworth and battled back for a split at the weather-shortened Missouri Coaches vs. Cancer Tournament in Cape Girardeau, Mo., on Saturday. After an 11-1 setback in game one versus Saint Louis, MSU rallied for an 8-0 victory against SEMO. Junior Chelsea Jones recorded five strikeouts, allowed just five hits and tossed her second complete game shutout of the season.
Duckworth went 2-for-3 tying career bests with four RBI and three runs scored in game two. She hit a home run, her first of the season, and a triple, her first career game with seven total bases. Chelsea Jones was 1-for-1 versus SEMO with two walks, two runs batted in and a run scored.
Game 1 - Missouri State 1, Saint Louis 11 (5 innings)
Bears' starting pitcher Jessie Van Es settled in to pitch a 1-2-3 second inning. SLU came back and scored five runs in the third inning.
The Bears looked to slice into the deficit in the bottom of the third. Erin Duewel began the inning with a solid single up the middle. Two batters later, Rebecca McPherson singled through the left side, but the Bears were unable to get on the board.
SLU added another run in the fourth and two more in the fifth. Missouri State had one last chance to get on the board in the bottom of the fifth. Bethany Sullinger led off the frame with a single up the middle. Three batters later, Duewel roped a double that one-hopped the fence in right-center to drive home Sullinger.
Game 2 - Missouri State 8, SEMO 0
MSU added to its lead in the second. Ali Trickey singled to left with one down. Kerri Cunningham moved her into scoring position with a ground out. Ashley Brentz then singled to center driving home Trickey.
In the Bears' third inning, Chelsea Jones walked with two outs. McPherson followed and reached on an infield single. Elena Gambill then placed a single just over the shortstop into left field scoring Jones for a 5-0 lead.
The Bears got back at it in the fifth. Boeckstiegel doubled into the left field corner to lead off the inning. Ciara Flau pinch ran and scored on a RBI triple to right-center by Duckworth. Chelsea Jones then laid down a perfect squeeze bunt to push Duckworth home for a 7-0 advantage.
MSU continued to push on offense in the seventh. Duckworth reached base for the third time in the game with a two-out walk. She scored for the third time as Chelsea Jones doubled off the centerfield fence.
The Bears will continue the season-opening road trip when they travel to Conway, Ark., next Wednesday (March 5) for a single game at Central Arkansas. MSU will then head to Stillwater, Okla., next weekend (March 7-9) to play in the Oklahoma State Mizuno Classic.
The Bears' home opener is scheduled for March 12 vs. SIU Edwardsville at 5:00 p.m. That game marks the beginning of a five-game home stand that includes the MVC opening series against Bradley (March 15-16).