A good defensive effort by the Roos turned into two wins at Missouri Complex 3 and 2 last Tuesday afternoon.
After a batter was hit with a pitch and a homerun by South Dakota State (SDST) catcher, Brittney Morse, the Jackrabbits took an early 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning.
“We struggled a little bit,” said Coach Meredith Smith Neal. “We needed to get back to what we did well.”
The Roos did make a comeback in the bottom of the third.
Freshman Sydney Garcia gave UMKC their first run with a long hit to right field
With bases loaded, short stop Morgan Bryn singled the ball back to right field, allowing two more Roos to score.
A fourth inning pitching change by the Jackrabbits was not enough to stop the Roos, who scored hree more runs scored in the fourth, including left fielder Maegan Rollow stealing home.
UMKC allowed SDST to score once more in the fifth inning before winning the game 6-3 on nine hits.
In game two, the Jackrabbits again were the first to score holding a 1-0 lead for two innings.
In the bottom of the fourth inning, center fielder, Kendra Leach got things going. She singled to right field, stole second base and scored the first run for the Roos. A hit to center field, a single to left, plus a walk, loaded the bases for UMKC, leading to a run scored by Bryn.
SDST evened the score 2-2 in the sixth inning scoring a run off a single to left field with runners on both first and third base.
Before they got the chance to load the bases, a ground ball was scooped by third baseman Ashlin O’Brien and thrown to first for the Jackrabbit third out.
“Our defense was a little bit more prepared,” said Coach Neal. “We did a better job of hitting our spots.”
The Jackrabbits made their last effort to win almost scoring with a deep hit to center field, but Leach would catch and kill SDST’s momentum sending the Roos back to the batter’s box one last time.
Garcia would be first to bat, slapping the ball all the way to the right field fence with a triple. Next to bat was Leach who hit a sacrifice pop-fly ball, giving Garcia the go ahead run for the 3-2 win.
“We need to prove to ourselves that when somebody else scores runs we can too,” said Coach Neal.