March 5, 2017 || University Field || 1:30 p.m.
COLUMBIA, Mo. -- The Maryland softball team overcame a six-run deficit to knock off #24 Missouri in extra innings in a road contest on Sunday. Down 7-1 entering the seventh inning, the Terrapins rallied off six runs in the final frame to tie the game and force extra innings. In extras, Maryland scored one in the eighth and one in the ninth while keeping Missouri off the board in the ninth to seal the victory.
Amanda Brashear, Destiney Henderson, Juli Strange and Kassidy Cross each had two hits for the Terps. Madison Martin got the win in the circle, hurling a career high eight innings forcing groundout after groundout and pop up after pop up.
The game, a rematch of yesterday’s 2-0 Missouri win was a pitcher’s duel early, with Martin allowing zero runs through five, and Missouri’s Cheyenne Baxter scoreless through four.
In the top of the fifth, Strange reached with an infield single than got all the way to third on a scoring error. Promptly, Cross lifted a fly ball to right field for the sacrifice fly to give Maryland a 1-0 lead.
Missouri scored seven runs in the sixth inning to take a 7-1 lead and looked to have the game in control. That’s when Maryland rallied.
After Strange flew out to start the seventh inning, Cross singled, Hannah Dewey walked, and Brashear singled to load the bases. A wild pitch scored Cross to make it 7-2 Missouri.
Then, with two outs five straight Terrapins reached, to score five and tie the game. Skylynne Ellazar hit a hard grounder to third that got booted to make it 7-3. Given another chance, Kristina Dillard crushed a double to left center to cut the deficit in half and make it 7-5. After Anna Kufta singled, a pair of seniors, Martin and Strange followed with clutch RBI knocks to even the game at seven.
In extras, with a runner being placed on second for both teams, Maryland used small ball in the eighth with a Hannah Dewey sacrifice bunt being used to move the runner, Cross over to third. A few batters later, Ellazar skied a sacrifice fly to give the Terrapins an 8-7 lead. Missouri used a similar strategy in the bottom half to tie the game up.
Dillard was the runner in the ninth and moved over to third on a Kufta sacrifice bunt. With two outs, Cross slashed a single through the 5-6 hole to give Maryland a lead it would not surrender.
After a failed sacrifice bunt attempt that got popped up from the Tigers in the bottom half, Dillard caught a Missouri runner trying to steal third. Brashear would secure the game by catching a ball in center and the Terrapins would leave Missouri with a win over a ranked opponent, its second of the season.
NOTE: This was the largest comeback for the Terrapins since March 27, 2015 when Maryland overcame a 10-2 deficit to win 11-10 in the first ever Big Ten game played in College Park.