Jordan Weber threw Missouri softball's third consecutive shutout in the SEC Tournament to propel the Tigers to a 3-0 win over third-seeded Tennessee on Friday in a semifinal in Gainesville, Florida. The win advances seventh-seeded Missouri to the SEC Tournament title game.
Weber endured a 2½-hour weather delay that took place with two outs in the top of the fifth inning. She allowed six hits in seven innings and pitched to contact, walking none and striking out one.
“Jordan today had one strikeout, but it’s 21 outs, and she knows that if she gets the ball and it’s not hit very hard, her defense is gonna be able to make 21 outs, and that’s really all we ask of them,” coach Larissa Anderson said.
Weber escaped trouble in the early innings. After Tennessee (39-16) began the bottom of the second with back-to-back singles, it used a bunt to put runners on second and third with one out. Weber induced two groundouts to keep the Volunteers off the board.
Tennessee again put two runners on base in the bottom of the third, but Tigers first baseman Emma Raabe snared a line drive off the bat of Zaida Puni and stepped on first for an inning-ending double play.
Facing a difficult lefty in Erin Edmoundson, Missouri’s offense resorted to power to support Weber. Kimberly Wert’s opposite-field home run in the fourth inning and Hatti Moore’s solo shot in the fifth put Missouri (36-19) ahead 2-0 before the delay struck.
Weber continued to perplex Tennessee after the break.
“Honestly, I told Hatti, I was like, ‘I feel really rejuvenated after that,’” Weber said. “I think sitting around for that long honestly helped me out.”
Edmoundson pitched into the seventh but exited after Kara Daly tacked on Missouri’s third run with a solo homer down the left-field line.
Missouri will face top-seeded Arkansas, a 4-1 winner over fifth-seeded Florida in the late semifinal, for the championship. The Tigers have not played the Razorbacks (43-9) this season.
“I’m so excited for these young ladies and our university to be in this situation,” Anderson said. “We’ve set out to win championships, and that’s what we wanna do and that’s what we wanna accomplish. … Last year we experienced what it would be like to be one game away from going to the College World Series, and here we are one game away from maybe holding up the SEC championship.”