Auburn takes series finale against MU softball in pitching rematch

Auburn sophomore Maddison Koepke slides to the home base as Missouri senior Hatti Moore tries to tag her out Sunday at Mizzou Softball Stadium. Moore was at bat three times, striking out twice.

Ben Miglore

Missouri’s Jordan Weber and Auburn’s Shelby Lowe put on a show in the circle in Friday’s game. Both went 6-plus innings giving up one run apiece, with Weber getting a career-high 13 strikeouts.

Sunday’s rematch between the two started out much the same way, but Weber misstepped, as Lowe and Auburn came out ahead in the series finale 3-0 to salvage a win in the series finale after Missouri took the first two.

The loss marked just the second time MU has been shutout this season.


Through four innings, both pitchers were nearly perfect. Two infield singles by Missouri in the third accounted for the only hits by either team. Weber allowed two baserunners, both of whom were caught stealing by catcher Hatti Moore.

“I thought Jordan threw well enough to win,” Missouri coach Larissa Anderson said. “It’s just real tough to win when you’re not scoring any runs.”

As the innings ticked on, Weber began to falter, with a dagger in the coming in the sixth.

Maddison Koepke led off the inning with her first hit of the season, a single into left field. Auburn had Makayla Packer attempt to sacrifice Koepke to scoring position.

But instead of taking the free out in exchange, Weber ended up hitting Packer in the left shoulder. That gave one of Auburn’s players a free pass to first base and moved Koepke to second with no outs. The sacrifice came next, with the two on base being moved over to second and third.

A crafty play by Weber then held the line on two outs. Kaylee Horton sent the ball right back to Weber, who cleanly fielded to catch Koepke in a rundown between third and home with Moore eventually applying the tag. The time spent getting Koepke let Horton and Packer take up scoring positions once again.

Tyler King put a single through the middle to make sure they weren’t stranded. King was 2 for 3 on the day, and that RBI single got Weber out of the game.

AU added one more in the inning after Emma Nichols relieved Weber, bringing the score to 3-0.

Lowe, meanwhile, was excellent for the second straight outing against Missouri. She kept Missouri off-balance, mixing up pitches and never giving a chance to make solid contact.

“We saw her for 14 innings throughout the two games,” Anderson said. “I just felt like we really didn’t get in a rhythm.”

What little offense the home-team Tigers did generate was scattered throughout the lineup, keeping any string of hits from forming.

Casidy Chaumont had the best contact of the day off Lowe. She sent two pitches on deep line drives to center, one of which dropped over the head of Packer for a double. The other was barely collected by the Auburn centerfielder.

Abby George also got a pair of infield hits, but the rest of what’s been a usually potent lineup was virtually silenced.