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When Missouri freshman pitcher Jordan Weber took the circle to start the game against Notre Dame, her coach wanted to see what she was made of.
The start was the first of Weber’s career, and the freshman also was the first to take the circle for the Tigers to start the new season. She answered the call, going six full innings with six strikeouts, allowing five hits and one earned run.
“[Coming in], I was feeling kind of nervous, just with this being my first collegiate game, but my teammates really helped calm me down and feel confident in myself going out there,” Weber said after the game. “I definitely felt some added pressure, especially when the bases were loaded in the first inning, but my teammates just kept pumping me up and that really helped.”
In the first inning, Weber got into some trouble, loading the bases with two outs before inducing a groundout to end the threat. The young hurler’s resiliency was something that stood out to Missouri head coach Larissa Anderson.
“[Jordan] had a great offseason; she’s really shown me how competitive she is, and she’s got great control and command,” Anderson said. “I was very impressed. I didn’t expect her to go six [innings]. There was a little hiccup in the middle of the game, and we started to get someone loose in the bullpen, but she responded when the pressure was on, made some key strikeouts in those situations, and it really showed me what her potential is.”
After six innings, most of them spent in a 1-1 tie with the Fighting Irish, Missouri’s offense came through. Three singles, a sacrifice fly, and a pair of free passes gave the Tigers a 3-1 lead in the top of the seventh, and Anderson pulled Weber in favor of Eli Daniel, who closed out the game with three straight outs to put the game officially in the books.
What was Weber feeling after her first collegiate win was officially recorded? “I feel really good right now,” the first-year righty said with a grin. “My team did such a great job today, and I just feel great to be a Mizzou Tiger.”
Day one happenings don’t often determine the fortunes of a full season, but with a game ball already on her mantle after just one start, keep an eye on Weber as the season goes on. She could be a game-changer for her Tigers.