CLEARWATER, Fla. — After missing last season following knee surgery, Baylor ace Gia Rodoni is expected to have some ups and downs as she works to return to her old form.
Rodoni collected a win and a save on opening day, but was rocked for three runs in the first two innings as Missouri romped to a 9-1 run-rule win Saturday morning at the Leadoff Classic.
Baylor (2-1) also dropped a 9-1 decision to the U.S. National Team in an exhibition game Saturday afternoon.
Rodoni (1-1) looked sharp in Friday’s 8-0 win over No. 23 Auburn as she threw four shutout innings to get the win before coming back to pitch the final inning in a 7-4 win over Louisville to pick up the save.
But she gave up three solo homers against Missouri to Jazmyn Rollin with one out in the first inning and to Kendyll Bailey and Emma Raabe to open the second inning before she was relieved by freshman Aliyah Pritchett.
“We were in a hole quickly with the three solo home runs but were able to stabilize things when Pritchett came in,” said Baylor coach Glenn Moore. “She also cut the lead with her first career home run. However we missed a couple of opportunities to add more. Their constant pressure finally led to the big inning that did us in. We are a work in progress, but even in a loss we get better.”
Pritchett hit her first collegiate homer in the fourth inning, but the Tigers responded with a five-run inning in the bottom of the fourth as Cayla Kessinger blasted a grand slam over the left-field fence.
Emma Nichols went the distance for the Tigers as she allowed seven hits while collecting six strikeouts.
Baylor will complete the Leadoff Classic against Missouri State at 8 a.m. Sunday.