Kayler Smith-23Sports

After a 3-0 undefeated first half to the weekend, Mizzou softball hoped to finish out the St. Pete/Clearwater Invite how they started.

Saturday afternoon, the Tigers began their game against Virginia Tech scoreless through three innings until the Hokies put Mizzou in a five run hole going into the bottom of the fifth inning. After a run scored on a wild pitch, the Tigers hit back-to-back homeruns from Cayla Kessinger with a three-run homer and Megan Moll to tie the game at five. A single from Brooke Wilmes brought Hannah McGivem in to score the game winning run at 6-5.

Going into the evening, Mizzou faced James Madison. Going into the seventh, the Tigers trailed 3-5 and a two-run shot from Kendyll Bailey sent Mizzou into extra innings tied at five with the Dukes. The Tigers brought in two in the top of the eighth, but a two-run home run from Madison Naujokas and a walk off sacrifice fly out from Logan Newton gave James Madison the win 8-7, and the Tigers their first loss on the weekend.

Mizzou finished out their weekend early Sunday morning against the Minnesota Gophers. After three scoreless innings, the Gophers took over the game in the fourth with five runs. Minnesota closed out the game with five more runs in the following two innings to win 10-1 and close out Mizzou’s weekend in Florida.

Mizzou softball improved this weekend to 9-2 with their only two losses to top 25 teams. The Tigers will remain in the top 25 as well following this weekend. Mizzou will travel to Cathedral City, California for the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic and open up against the Arizona Wildcats Thursday at 7:30 p.m.