Kari Mason was 3-for-3 with three runs scored, and pitcher Lauren Baker was one batter short of a no-hitter as Trevecca Nazarene University breezed to a 9-0 victory over Midland Lutheran (Neb.) College on Thursday in the opening game of pool play at the NAIA Softball National Championship.
Mason scored her first run on Heather Shuler’s three-run home run that capped a four-run first inning. She then concluded the scoring when she came home from third on Baker’s two-out single in the bottom of the fourth.
Baker then got the first two outs in the top of the fifth before he allowed her only hit — a single. She retired the next hitter and the game ended due to the mercy rule.
Baker did allow three walks but also struck out six. She threw 94 pitches, 55 of them strikes, in her 14th complete game and fourth shutout of the season.
The second-ranked Lady Trojans (47-3) combined nine hits, including at least one by six different players. Leadoff batter Kelsey Lantrip was 2-for-3 and was the only one other than Mason with multiple hits. Lantrip scored twice and drove in two runs.
Trevecca, which has won 19 in a row and 34 of its last 35, plays Northwood at 10 a.m. Friday in its second game of pool play. Northwood lost 1-0 on Thursday.