Rally Falls Short as Tigers Fall, 5-3

MUTIGERS.COM
<i>Brannon Champagne has reached base in 21 straight games.</i>

MUTIGERS.COM
Brannon Champagne has reached base in 21 straight games.
MUTIGERS.COM

April 6, 2012

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COLUMBIA, Mo. - Starting pitcher Blake Holovach gave up four runs in 5.2 innings on nine hits, a hole that Mizzou (16-13) was unable to climb out of in the 5-3 loss despite a late rally. The Tigers threatened to put up big innings in the seventh and eighth, but left three runners stranded in scoring position of the final three frames. Brannon Champagne extended his streak of reaching base safely to 21 consecutive games in the losing effort.

Baylor jumped on Mizzou early as the Bears' leadoff batter sent a fly ball over the left field fence to start the game and take a 1-0 lead. Holovach responded by forcing a pop up then recording a strikeout before a groundout to short ended the inning. Blake Brown led off with a double to the corner in left, his fifth double of the season. Champagne's bunt moved Brown to third with an out, but he was left stranded. Baylor threatened again in the second with a one-out double down the third base line, but a groundout to third and a flyout to center ended the kept the Bears off the board. After the Tigers went down in order in the bottom of the second, Holovach struck out the leadoff hitter before surrendering a single. A sacrifice bunt then moved the runner to second with two outs, then Holovach struck out the final batter of the inning. Mizzou was retired 1-2-3 again in the bottom of the third, and Baylor preserved their 1-0 lead.

The fourth inning started with a solid defensive play by shortstop Eric Garcia, fielding a grounder deep in the hole and throwing the runner out at first. A double to left then put a runner on second with an out, but a groundout to third and a strikeout ended the inning before Mizzou went down hitless in the bottom of the frame. Holovach held Baylor scoreless again, finishing the inning by picking off a runner at first. Ben Turner's single in the bottom of the fifth ended a streak of 13 batters retired for Mizzou. Dane Opel followed that with a single of his own, putting two on with one out. Gavin Stark then loaded the bases with an infield single, and an error by Baylor scored the run to tie the game at one before the inning ended. Back to back hits put runners on second and third with no outs in the top of the sixth for the Bears, and a single to center scored both runners to give Baylor a 3-1 lead. A two-out double to right scored another run for the Bears, giving them a 4-1 advantage. Dusty Ross entered to pitch with a runner on second a two outs, and induced a flyout to right to end the inning. Scott Sommerfeld singled to center to lead off the sixth, then an error put two on with no outs, but three straight outs ended the threat.

An error put the first batter aboard for Baylor in the seventh, and a wild pitch moved him to second before a flyout to center advanced the runner to third. A single to right scored the run to make the score 5-1 favoring Baylor before the inning ended. Dillon Everett walked with an out in the bottom of the frame, and Champagne walked with two outs to keep his on-base streak going at 21 games. A single with a throwing error then gave Mizzou its second run of the game, making the score 5-2. Mach then walked to load the bases, and Garcia walked to score another run, making the score 5-3 heading to the eighth. Ross stayed strong with a 1-2-3 eighth, and the Tigers got a one-out walk from pinch-hitter Patrick Quintanilla, who was replaced on first with Sal Belfonte, who stole second two pitches later, but was left stranded on second. Conner Mach recorded the first out in the top of the ninth with a great grab on a hard line drive to third, the first out of a 1-2-3 inning. Mach's two-out walk in the bottom of the ninth provided the only baserunner of the inning for the Tigers, and Mizzou fell 5-3.

Mizzou takes on Baylor for the final time Saturday (April 7) at 11 AM. Keep up to date with Mizzou baseball by following the team's twitter page (@MUTigerBaseball) or by checking MUTigers.com.

 

 

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