Poor Pitching and Sloppy Fielding Snap Tigers’ Win Streak

Sunday, March 18-

Missouri headed into Sunday’s matchup with High Point riding a ten-game win streak and hoping to sweep the Panthers.

A tough 13-7 loss snapped the Tigers winning streak, but with the two victories on Friday and Saturday, they were still able to win the series. Poor pitching and sloppy fielding caused the game to get out of hand quickly.

Making his second start of the season for Mizzou, freshman Brandon Platts didn’t last long as High Point jumped out to an early lead, scoring one run in the first inning. With one out in the second and already down 3-0, Missouri pulled Platts from the game.

Jeff Emens took over and was immediately hit hard. Emens gave up a three-run home run before retiring the final two batters to end the top half of the second already behind 7-0. Dane Opel hit a solo home run in the bottom half of the inning to make it a 7-1 lead for High Point.

The Tigers pitching staff struggled all game long, giving up a total of 17 hits while only striking out four. Missouri used seven pitchers with Emens pitching the most, just two and two thirds innings.

Missouri’s defense did not help the pitchers, with four total errors—including three in the eighth—when the Panthers scored four more runs to bring their final run total up to 13. Third basemen Connor Mach, usually a fantastic fielder, made three of the Tigers’ errors. Two came in the eighth when he was moved over to second base to accommodate a pitch hitter.

The Tigers attempted a come back in the seventh inning. With the bases loaded, back-to-back runs were walked in. Missouri added one more run on another bases-loaded walk before the inning ended. Two more runs in the eighth and a Blake Brown solo home run in the ninth, his sixth of the year, was all the Tigers could produce.

With the loss Missouri is now 12-6 on the season and 10-2 on their 18-game home stand. The Tigers next game is Wednesday, March 21 at 3 p.m. against the Indiana State Sycamores at Taylor Stadium in Columbia, Mo.

– Walt Scher
23 Sports
Staff Writer