Peter Fairbanks allowed just one earned run in 6.2 innings Saturday.
May 10, 2014
COLUMBIA, S.C. - Sophomore Josh Lester (Columbus, Ga.) launched his first homer of the season and classmate Peter Fairbanks (Webster Groves, Mo.) was sharp over 6.2 innings, but Mizzou baseball fell to No. 11 South Carolina, 3-1, on Saturday afternoon at Carolina Stadium. The loss drops Mizzou to 20-29 on the year and 6-20 in SEC play. Fairbanks allowed just one earned run over 6.2 innings, but the defense let him down as two more unearned runs scored as he took the loss. However, in his last five appearances, Fairbanks owns a 1.40 ERA over 25.2 innings pitched. Lester's first-inning homer was his first since May 4, 2013, but that was all the offense could scrape across in the loss.
Senior catcher Dylan Kelly (Roswell, Ga.) extended his hitting streak to a career-long seven games and Lester tallied his 13th multi-hit game of the season in the loss. South Carolina's Jack Wynkoop earned the win, his seventh of the season as South Carolina clinched the series. Joel Seddon earned his SEC-leading 14th save.
Mizzou got on the board first on Saturday as Lester launched a 2-1 pitch over the wall in right field for his first homer of the season, giving Mizzou a 1-0 lead. It was Lester's first homer of the season and first since May 4, 2013, at Texas A&M. Fairbanks then worked around a one-out walk in SC's half of the first, retiring the side on just 15 pitches.
Fairbanks continued to pitch efficiently in the second inning, needing just nine pitches to work around a one-out single, sending the game to the third inning. Mizzou nearly scored again in its half of the third as Lester lifted a ball to right field and Brett Peel (St. Charles, Mo.) attempted to score from third on the flyout, but he was gunned on a perfect throw at the dish by Gamecock right fielder Gene Cone for the final out.
South Carolina then put the first two men aboard in the third on back-to-back singles and the runners were moved up on a bunt as three-hole hitter Kyle Martin stepped to the plate. He notched an RBI groundout and then with two outs, third baseman fielded a ball by Grayson Greiner and threw it away, allowing a second run to score. That gave the Gamecocks a 2-1 leaded headed to the fourth. Martin's RBI groundout snapped a streak of 10.2 innings without an earned run by Fairbanks.
Fairbanks continued to deal into the sixth, pitching out of some trouble in the fourth and fifth innings. Dillon Everett (Phoenix, Ariz.) dropped a fly ball in left field to open the bottom of the sixth inning, but Fairbanks got the next two outs. Max Schrock then ripped a two-out single into center field to plate an unearned run, giving the Gamecocks a 3-1 lead. Fairbanks threw 85 pitches through six innings and gave up just one earned run.
He then worked through 6.2 innings and he pitched out of trouble in the seventh after back-to-back hits to open the inning. Sophomore lefty Austin Tribby (Springfield, Mo.) got the final out of the inning to strand a pair of Carolina runners. Breckin Williams (Oronogo, Mo.) then took over in the bottom of the eighth and worked around a leadoff single as Kendall Keeton (Columbia, Tenn.) robbed an RBI single from Kyle Martin for the third out in the inning, making a leaping snare at a line drive towards the right field line. But Mizzou could not scrape across anymore runs.
For all the latest on Mizzou baseball, stay tuned to MUTigers.com and follow the team on twitter @MizzouBaseball.
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