The Mizzou baseball scored three times in the top of the eighth inning to add four-run cushion, then held on for the win after Missouri State rallied but came up short in a 5-4 final at Hammons Field in Springfield, MO. The win give Tigers a 23-22 all-time edge in the series lead.
Missouri broke through against MSU relievers Matt Hall and Erik Shannahan with three runs in its key eighth-inning rally to extend its advantage to 5-1. Keaton Steele, who finished 3 for 4, delivered his third hit of the game to start the inning, and Dylan Kelly drew a walk from Hall before Logan Pearson belted a one-out triple over the head of Tate Matheny in deep center field to chase home both base-runners. Next, Kendall Keeton blooped a run-scoring single over a drawn-in MSU infield to bring in Pearson with the Tigers’ third run of the inning.
The Bears mounted a three-run rally of their own in the bottom half of the inning. Luke Voit was the first of four straight MSU hitters to reach base, driving a single to right-center off Breckin Williams with one man out. Williams and another reliever, Jake Walsh, issued back-to-back walks to load the bases before pinch hitter Spencer Johnson drove in a run with a solid single through the left side of the Tigers’ infield to make it a 5-2 game. Walsh threw a pair of wild pitches to bring home both Koby Peebles and Keenen Maddox.
The Bears put their first two runners on base in the ninth. Mizzou reliever John Miles struck out Eric Cheray on a fouled two-strike bunt attempt and then induced a game-ending 6-4-3 double-play off the bat of Voit to earn his first save of the season.
Mizzou is now 12-17 on the season and Missouri State is 19-9.