Missouri softball team falls in rankings after losses at Alabama

Tuesday, April 9, 2013 | 9:55 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA – This week, the Missouri softball team fell to No. 8 in the USA Today/NFCA poll and No. 9 in the Softball poll.

Last week, Missouri (23-4, 8-3 SEC) started off the week sweeping a doubleheader at Missouri State on Wednesday. The Tigers scored 19 unanswered runs against the Bears, with Chelsea Thomas (14-3) and Nicole Hudson (6-0) each earning a win. Thomas's win in Game 1 was the 100th win of her career as a Tiger.

The weekend brought a tougher series for Missouri with three games against No. 4/5 Alabama in Tuscaloosa. Missouri's bats cooled off Friday when Alabama ace Jackie Traina pitched six scoreless innings in a 4-1 Missouri loss.

Missouri battled back Saturday with nine runs against Alabama. Hudson came in to relive Thomas in the seventh, but after giving up four runs, Tigers coach Ehren Earleywine brought Thomas back to secure a 9-4 victory. Thomas is now one win away from tying Teresa Wilson's Missouri record of 102 wins.

Pitching 12 1/3 innings in two days took a toll on Thomas and it showed Sunday when she gave up 11 earned runs on 11 hits and eight walks. The Tigers were able to score six runs, but it was not enough to stop the Crimson Tide from winning 14-6 in six innings.

With a home run in Saturday's game, Kelsea Roth tied Hudson for the team lead of 10 home runs. Angela Randazzo's hot hitting the past few weeks has put her first in RBIs and right behind Roth and Hudson with eight home runs.

This week, Missouri makes a quick trip west to take on Missouri–Kansas City in a doubleheader Wednesday. Arkansas (26-14, 4-7 SEC) comes to Columbia for Missouri's fifth Southeastern Conference series this season with the first game set for 6 p.m. Friday.

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