Minner’s hits get Tigers even

Wins against Texas Tech get Missouri back to .500.
Monday, May 1, 2006 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 2:11 p.m. CDT, Monday, July 21, 2008

Micaela Minner got her revenge.

After getting hit by three different pitchers on Saturday, Minner struck back on Sunday with three hits and two RBIs, the only runs Missouri scored. Those two runs, however, were enough for Missouri to beat Texas Tech 2-1.

“Today, I was actually more relaxed than usual,” Minner said, insisting that she wasn’t holding a grudge against the Red Raiders. “The only part of me that was sore was my right leg.”

After the game, Minner and Missouri (23-23, 7-9) had some extra time to rest. The game started at 9:30 a.m. in hopes of avoiding thunderstorms forecast to hit Columbia later in the day. Coach Ty Singleton said the early start time didn’t alter the Tigers’ pre-game routine. Too much.

“It was a rushed pre-game,” Singleton said of his team’s preparations which included 8 a.m. batting practice at nearby Devine Pavilion and senior day festivities that honored departing Tigers Joanne Loethen and Janessa Roening. “I don’t enjoy playing at 9 a.m. You can’t let the circumstances change your approach.”

The win completed a two-game sweep over the Red Raiders (19-34, 4-13) and got the Tigers back to .500, a fact Singleton said he wasn’t aware of.

“I couldn’t have told you that was our record,” Singleton said. “We’re not where we want to be.”

Missouri starting pitcher Jen Bruck, who threw seven innings and gave up only five hits and one walk for her 21st win of the season, said she got over the trouble she’s had with pitching in the morning.

“The early start didn’t really affect me at all,” Bruck said. “I hated pitching in the morning in summer ball. But right now, I think I’m mentally stronger and able to deal with it.”

Bruck said that her change-up, a pitch she needs to be effective because she is not a strike-out pitcher, was working early.

“When it works, I know it is going to be a pretty good day,” Bruck said.

Ten of the 21 outs the Red Raiders made were on groundballs.

“I was happy with how I threw it today,” Bruck said.

Singleton was also happy with how his fielders supported Bruck. On Saturday, the Tigers committed four errors that led to two unearned runs. On Sunday, the Tigers made no errors.

“Jen’s a ground-ball pitcher,” Singleton said. “Any time someone is throwing two days in a row, you know there are going to be a lot of groundballs.”

Minner, whose fifth inning single drove in left fielder Leanne Bowers for the go-ahead run, said she got more sleep than she usually does before games.

“I was pretty rested today,” Minner said. “It didn’t really feel like it was that early in the morning. It wasn’t that cold and it was a pretty nice day. It even got kind of hot by the end of the day.”

Since the game ended before 11:30, the Tigers had some extra free time on Sunday. Minner said she knew what she was going to do with her afternoon.

“I have to study,” Minner said. “Finals are coming up pretty soon.”

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