COLUMBIA, Mo. - No. 23 Mizzou Baseball dropped a 6-5 decision to in-state rival Southeast Missouri Tuesday afternoon at Taylor Stadium. Sophomore 1B Brian Sharp (Liberty, Mo.) hit a go-ahead, two-run double in the bottom of the fourth inning, but SEMO exploded for four runs in the top of the fifth off of Mizzou's bullpen to put the game out of reach. Mizzou tried to rally with two in the eighth, but lost a runner at the plate on a safety squeeze play which would have tied the game.
Mizzou RHP Cameron Dulle (St. Louis, Mo.) took the loss after being charged with three of the four runs in the fifth. He came in after a solid start from junior RHP Bryce Montes De Oca (Lawrence, Kan.) who went 4.0 innings while allowing just two earned runs on two hits with a career-high six strikeouts. Nate Green earned the win for SEMO, tossing 4.0 innings with just two earned runs allowed while SEMO's Friday night starter Clay Chandler earned a five-out save, his first of the season.
Montes De Oca worked an easy 1-2-3 first inning on just 10 pitches, picking up a pair of strikeouts. He then ran into trouble in the second, walking three and allowing a pair of RBI singles as SEMO took a 2-0 lead.
Mizzou cut the lead in half in the third on a Trey Harris (Powder Springs, Ga.) sacrifice fly, taking advantage of a big throwing error by the Redhawks. After Montes De Oca threw up another zero in the top of the fourth, Mizzou got a two-out rally from the bottom of the order in its half of the fourth. Alex Samples (Bridgeport, Texas) and Chris Cornelius (St. Louis, Mo.) tallied back-to-back two-out singles and Brian Sharp (Liberty, Mo.) hit a two-run double to give Mizzou a 3-2 lead.
The lead was short lived as Clayton Evans hit a solo homer to lead off the top of the fifth inning off reliever Cameron Dulle (St. Louis, Mo.). The line kept moving on consecutive RBI hits off reliever Ryan Lee (Grandview, Mo.) and the Redhawks got another on an RBI groundout to take a 6-3 lead.
Mizzou threatened in the bottom of the seventh inning, loading the bases with one out for Robbie Glendinning (Scarborough, Australia) who drew a bases-loaded walk to draw Mizzou within two at 6-4. Brett Bond (St. Louis, Mo.) then hit a sacrifice fly to pull within one at 6-5. SEMO escaped the jam without any further damage.
Junior RHP Nolan Groamcki (Smithville, Mo.) pitched a shutout eighth inning and Samples led off the bottom of the frame with his second hit of the game. Mizzou then put runners on the corners with one out in the eighth inning, but a botched safety squeeze cut down a runner at the plate and a strikeout by Connor Brumfield (Columbia, Mo.) ended the inning. Mizzou then went 1-2-3 in the ninth after T.J. Sikkema (DeWitt, Iowa) pitched a shutout top of the ninth inning.
Mizzou will return home Friday for a three-game series with No. 9 Florida at 6:30 p.m. For all the latest on Mizzou Baseball, stay tuned to MUTigers.com and follow the team on Twitter (@MizzouBaseball) and like the team on Facebook and Instagram (Mizzou Baseball and missouri_baseball, respectively).
Head Coach Steve Bieser
Opening statement... "I mean it's a disappointing loss. There is a lot of frustration because it's the second game in a row that we've been right there. One play swings the game. I thought there was a play there that really swung the game and put us in a bad spot. And then we weren't able to capitalize, coming up with a big hit. I thought we had a bad read on base running - we did way too many things wrong and they did a good job. We knew they would come in and swing the bats. They hit in key situations and we just couldn't get it going and stay consistent through nine innings. Very frustrating loss."
- Mizzou still leads the all-time series with SEMO, 23-13. Mizzou is now 2-1 on Tuesdays this year.
- Mizzou is now 6-1 vs. left-handed starters this year.
- Mizzou has lost back-to-back games for the first time all season.
- Mizzou had won its first seven one-run games this season but has now lost two straight.
- Junior RHP Bryce Montes De Oca matched his career-high with six strikeouts on Tuesday
- Sophomore OF Connor Brumfield singled in the fifth inning and has now reached base safely in 13 consecutive games.
- Brumfield also tallied his 10th multi-hit game of the season Tuesday, tied for the team-lead.
- 1B Brian Sharp's double extended his streak to 15 consecutive games reaching base safely.
- Sharp tallied his team-leading 10th multi-hit game Tuesday and he is now tied for the team-lead with three three-hit games this season.
- Junior OF Trey Harris hit a sacrifice fly in the third inning, Mizzou's national-leading 21st SAC fly this season.
- 3B Alex Samples tallied his seventh multi-hit game of the season Tuesday and third consecutive multi-hit outing.
- Mizzou tallied 10+ strikeouts on the mound for the 13th time through 25 games. Mizzou had just 13 such games all season a year ago.