@MemphisSoftball Snaps Missouri State's Eight-Game Winning Streak
Feb. 22, 2014
SOUTHAVEN, Miss. - Memphis scored three unearned runs in the third to come from behind and defeat Missouri State 3-2 on Saturday night in the Blues City Classic at Greenbrook Park.
The win marked the third in a row for the Tigers (6-5) and snapped an eight-game winning streak by the Bears (9-3). Memphis has won six-straight games in its annual tournament.
"I felt like this was going to be our toughest competition this weekend," said Memphis head coach Natalie Poole. "I watched their hitters earlier in the tournament and felt they were going to be a really aggressive team. I'm really pleased with our effort tonight and to come out with a win."
Missouri State scored runs in the first and second innings to take an early 2-0 lead, but Memphis used a big third inning to take a lead it never relinquished.
Facing a team that is hitting over .300, freshman Christian Novak (3-1) earned her third victory in the circle. The Nevada, Mo., native scattered four hits and struck out five without giving up walk.
"That was a really good hitting team," Novak said. "I thought we made some really good defensive plays and stuck with it when we were down. We got our energy up and were really together in that game."
Freshman Brittany Vaughn continued to give Memphis an offensive boost. The Bowling Green, Ky., native drove in two RBI, including the go-ahead run, with a single in the third. Vaughn has reached base safely in all 11 games this season and recorded hits and 10 of the 11 contests.
The Bears took an early 1-0 lead in the top half of the first. Kerri Cunningham led off the inning with a single and scored on an error. Missouri State added to its lead in the second with a run on a two-out double by Ali Trickey down the left line.
Mangum led off the third inning with a single and scored on a two-out infield single by Harrell. Vaughn then hit a two-run single up the middle to give Memphis the 3-2 lead.
"We came together as a team and said we're not going to lose this game. We're going to pull together and string some hits together," Vaughn said. "We did that in that one inning and scored three. It's just a great team win tonight."
The Tigers had runners on second and third with one out or less in both the fifth and sixth innings but failed to bring home an extra run.
Chelsea Jones (3-2) suffered the loss for Missouri State allowing three runs on five hits with no walks and three strikeouts.
Memphis hosts the final day of the Blues City Classic on Sunday. The Tigers will face Southeast Missouri at 12 p.m. in the tournament.
For tournament updates, live stats and box scores, visit http://www.gotigersgo.com/sports/w-softbl/spec-rel/2014-blues-city-softbl-tourney.html.