McGinley, Bears Christen Killian Stadium with 3-1 Win



SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- Junior pitcher Lauren McGinley carried the Missouri State softball team both in the circle and at the plate, leading the Bears to a 3-1 victory over UMKC Saturday (March 7) on day two of the All-Missouri Classic. The win for the Bears capped a day that saw them dedicate Killian Softball Stadium before a crowd of more than 300 former players, dignitaries and supporters.


The victory for Missouri State was its first in its new park, which it opened Friday with a 4-1 setback to Southeast Missouri State. Saturday’s pregame dedication ceremony included numerous Missouri State and Springfield and Greene County officials, as well as over 40 former MSU softball players and coaches.


McGinley made it a memorable night for all, holding the Kangaroos (5-15) to six hits and a single run in improving to 5-1 on the season. The Oklahoma City native allowed just three hits through 6 2/3 shutout innings before Ann Sokolik laced a pitch down the line in left, then circled the bases for an inside-the-park home run when leftfielder Tyler Porter lost her footing while attempting to retrieve the ball in the corner.  


Megan Vicino and Rhiannon Mendez followed with base hits to bring the go-ahead run to the plate, but McGinley retired Kalene Curry on a grounder to third to end the contest. McGinley’s complete-game effort was her fifth of the season.


McGinley’s solid work in the circle followed her second-inning heroics at the plate which handed the Bears an early 1-0 lead. After Jenna Schwark drew a one-out walk and stole second, catcher Jen Carr lined a Nicholle Ellis offering right back to the UMKC starting pitcher for the second out of the inning. McGinley then lined a single to left-center field to plate Schwark with the game’s first tally.


MSU added on to its lead in the fourth, as Carr redeemed herself with a two-run double in the left-centerfield gap to bring home Brooke Kempker and Schwark.


The Bears’ (8-6) only other offense came from Ashley Arbon, who recorded two of the team’s five hits on the evening.


UMKC was led by Vicino and Mendez, who each turned in two-hit performances.


Ellis (3-2) suffered the loss for the Kangaroos after allowing three earned runs on five hits and four walks.


Missouri State will be back in action Sunday (March 8) at Killian Stadium when they take on 12th-ranked Missouri at 1 p.m., before concluding the tournament with a 3 p.m. match-up against Saint Louis.


All-Missouri Classic - Day Two


SEMO 1, Saint Louis 0 -- Giana Zimmerman’s solo shot down in the bottom of the sixth inning was all the run support SEMO starter Stephanie Barnes (1-0) would need. The right-hander held Saint Louis to just four hits in a complete-game shutout to give the Redhawks their third win of the tournament. Stacy Gillette (1-4) was nearly as effective in the circle for SLU, allowing just seven hits and the one run.


Saint Louis 7, UMKC 1 -- SLU’s Nicki Jost had three hits and three RBIs, including a run-scoring single in the Bills’ three-run third inning that broke open the game. Kristin Nicoletti scored three times and also came through with three hits, while Erin Kelly picked up the win with 5 1/3 solid innings in which she allowed just one run on four hits.


#12 Missouri 8, SEMO 0 -- Freshman Chelsea Thomas (7-2) hurled a five-inning no-hitter , while the Tigers battered SEMO pitching with a 10-hit attack, led by Rhea Taylor and  Julie Silver’s three-hit performances. Silver doubled twice, stole two bases and drove in four runs, while Taylor scored twice, scored a run and stole her eighth base of the season to help MU improve to 16-3 on the year.



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