KU to Face Red-Hot Mizzou in Border Showdown

April 10, 2007


First Pitch
Kansas (27-14-1, 3-4 Big 12) heads to Columbia, Mo. Wednesday, April 11, for its annual battle with the Missouri Tigers (29-17, 5-0 Big 12). With a victory, KU can move out of a tie for sixth place and into the top half of the league standings. First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m. Live Gametracker will be available for all games on kuathletics.com.

The Jayhawks return 10 letterwinners from last year’s Big 12 postseason championship team, including All-Big 12 senior pitcher Kassie Humphreys (13-7). Sophomore shortstop Stevie Crisosto leads the Jayhawk attack with a .346 batting average. Head coach Tracy Bunge is in her 11th season at KU with a 345-285-2 record.

About Missouri
After sweeping Oklahoma State, 2-1 and 6-1, the Missouri Tigers are one of only two teams left in the Big 12 with unblemished conference marks. Missouri leads the all-time series with KU 51-39, but the Jayhawks have won three out of the last five contests including the last two.

Missouri is an offensive juggernaut that uses a .300 batting average to score 6.0 runs per game. The offense is powered by junior Micaela Minner. She has a .392 average and is second in the conference with 14 doubles. Minner is not the Tiger’s only weapon, as three other MU starters bat over .300. The most notable on that list is junior Amanda Renth who is second in the Big 12 with 13 home runs.

Humphreys is Big 12’s Most Versatile Player
Senior Kassie Humphreys has long been regarded as one of the Big 12’s top pitchers, but in her senior campaign, she has become a major weapon on offense. In conference play, Humphreys ranks 13th in the league with a 3.21 ERA, fifth in strikeouts with 31, and second in appearances with six. And through the first few weeks of conference play, she has a team-leading .389 batting average, good for 11th best in the Big 12. Humphreys, along with Texas A&M’s Megan Gibson are the only two players to rank in the Top 20 of hitting and pitching of conference play.

Crisosto Having Record Setting Season
Sophomore shortstop Stevie Crisosto has been the team’s most consistent hitter this season. She has recorded at least one hit in 76.2% of the team’s games while batting .346. She is second on the team with a .520 slugging percentage and leads the team in total bases with 66. The Palo Cedro, Calif. native is also the Jayhawks’ most effective base-runner, as she leads the team with 12 stolen bases.

At Crisosto’s current pace, her name will appear in the record books for the best season by a KU sophomore. With at least 16 games to play, she ranks fifth for runs scored with 29 and in a tie for third with four home runs.

Border Showdown
Wednesday’s game does not only have implications for the Big 12 Standings, but also in the Border Showdown. Currently MU holds a 16.0-12.0 advantage over Kansas. The two softball contests are each worth 1.5 points. A Kansas sweep of the Tigers would give KU a chance to win the Border Showdown, as the net total of 39 points quickly evaporate.