By: Anthony Dean
Missouri baseball failed to cash in with runners in scoring position multiple times as they suffered their third lost in the last four games against Missouri State.
The Tigers opened the game up with an early 1-0 lead in the first inning after Brett Bond drove in Connor Brumfield on a sacrifice fly. But, the Bears responded in the second inning as Jack Duffy tied the game with an RBI double.
Missouri State then took a 3-1 lead in the third inning when Jake Burger launched a two-run home run over the left field wall. Mizzou struck back quickly as in the bottom of the third, Nelson Mompierre and Robbie Glendinning both drove in runs with RBI singles.
The game then settled into a defensive battle, as Missouri’s Andy Toelken and Missouri State’s Austin Knight would not give up another run. Toelken in particular pitched very well after the third especially. He threw a total of 7.1 innings, with six strikeouts and allowing just three earned runs on six hits.
In the fifth inning, the Tigers had runners on second and third, but failed to drive home a run. In the seventh inning, Mompierre choked up and hit a two-out single through the right side. Pinch runner Johnny Balsamo stole second to set up another scoring opportunity. But, once again Missouri could not cash in as Glendinning stuck out swinging.
Missouri State loaded the bases in the eighth inning with one out after an intentional walk and a hit batter followed a leadoff single. Ty Shoaff came in out of the bullpen and struck out the first batter he faced and appeared set to get out of the jam on a slow roller to first, but a throwing error allowed two runs to score, which gave the Bears a 5-3 lead.
The Tigers put two men on in the eighth inning with only out, but Chris Cornelius grounded into a 6-4-3 double play to end the inning. Missouri State closer Bryan Young was brought in the ninth and he shut the door on Mizzou, retiring the side in order.
With the loss, the Tigers fall to 26-12 on the season. Next up for Mizzou is a three-game series at Ole Miss, which begins Friday night at 6:30 p.m.