Janessa Roening didn’t see the winning play in Missouri’s 6-5 win against No. 5 Texas A&M on Saturday at University Field.
Missouri’s right fielder had her back to home plate as she sprinted to first base. She was hoping her single through the right side with one out in the bottom of the seventh would score teammate Sarah Stringer and win the game.
Roening didn’t see the throw from right field arrive at home plate just before Stringer.
She also didn’t see Stringer’s slide cause the Aggies’ Morgan Hebert to teeter over, jarring the ball loose from her glove.
Stringer was safe at the plate.
“When I turned around, I saw a bunch of commotion,” Roening said.
She counted on her teammates to tell her the play’s outcome.
“They started jumping up and down, so I figured we won,” she said.
Though the win kept the Tigers sixth in the conference standings, Singleton said it will help them as they close out the regular season.
Missouri was 1-4 in its past five Big 12 games entering Saturday, including two one-run losses last weekend at Baylor.
“Last week, we had some back-and forth with Baylor and came out on the other end,” Missouri coach Ty Singleton said. “It should be a win to build on.”
Singleton said he was pleased with Roening, who went 2-for-4 and hit her fifth home run in the first inning. The ball was aided by the wind and went out just left of the flagpole in center field.
“Even her strikeout was good,” he said. “She was right in there, dialed in.”
The victory came before a record crowd of 691 and improved No. 19 Missouri’s record to 35-10, 7-7 in the Big 12.
Missouri freshman Jen Bruck, the starting pitcher, and Amanda Renth also hit home runs for the Tigers.
Texas A&M (42-5, 13-3) scored a run in five of seven innings. The Aggies put their leadoff hitter aboard three times.
The Aggies played small ball for most of the game, often bunting to get runners on and move them over.
Aggies second baseman Joy Davis stole four bases. Center fielder Sharonda McDonald added two more, and the Aggies had eight stolen bases in as many attempts.
“I would have liked to have a little more success throwing somebody out,” Missouri catcher Kathy Masterson said. “But then again, we were aggressive. We did our best.”
It was “Jimmy Buffett Day” at the ballpark, with many fans dressed in a tropical fashion, hoping the temperature would eclipse the forecasted high of 60 degrees.
Some of the Buffett-themed games were dissatisfying. A cheeseburger-eating contest in the middle of the fourth inning, set to the singer’s “Cheeseburger in Paradise,” particularly lacked luster.
Both contestants seemed to ignore the competitive element to the game, eating their burgers at a leisurely pace.
The winner, Leah Steele, wasn’t determined until Missouri had been batting for a few minutes in the bottom of the inning.
The teams play again at noon today.