Posted: Mar 31, 2013 10:29 AM
Updated: Mar 31, 2013 11:43 AM
COLUMBIA - Four homers for No. 4 LSU (25-2, 7-1) helped the visiting Tigers best Mizzou (9-14, 2-6), 8-0, Saturday night at Taylor Stadium. LSU third baseman Christian Ibarra smashed two home runs in the contest, tying Mason Katz for a game-high three RBI, as the visiting Tigers scored all eight runs in the game's first five frames. Mizzou starter Brett Graves went four innings, allowing three runs in four innings, giving up five hits to LSU.
Dane Opel extended his on-base streak to 16 games, and Jake Ivory went 2-for-3 at the plate, singling twice and reaching base three times in the contest. The home Tigers knocked nine hits against LSU starter Ryan Eades, besting their total of six from the series opener.
LSU threatened quickly with a leadoff double from Sean McMullen, and Mark Laird walked to put two on with no outs. Graves then induced a double play before Dillon Everett made a great diving play at short, nailing Raph Rhymes at first to end the inning scoreless. Mizzou put two on in the bottom of the frame, but both runners were left stranded. The visiting Tigers drew first blood with a solo shot in the top of the second from Ibarra, and Mizzou was again held off the board by LSU pitcher Ryan Eades in the second.
Mizzou had a chance to score in the third after Dylan Kelly's single on a hit-and-run with Opel put runners on the corners with one out, but a double play ended the inning. Two solo home runs in the top of the fourth from Alex Bregman and Katz put LSU up 3-0 in the top of the fourth, and Mizzou appeared poised to rally in the bottom of the frame after Case Munson and Ivory tallied back-to-back singles to start the frame, but neither could score.
Griffin Goodrich entered to pitch in the fifth, and LSU tacked on five runs, with Raph Rhymes, Katz and Ibarra driving in the runs for an 8-0 edge. Mizzou put two on with one out again in the bottom of the inning, but again the Tigers were held off the board. John Miles, who closed out the fifth inning, threw a scoreless sixth while tossing two strikeouts. Eades threw another scoreless inning in the sixth, facing only three batters in the frame before both teams went quietly in the seventh.
Jace James threw a scoreless eighth inning before the Tigers were held scoreless in the bottom of the frame. Peter Fairbanks closed out the game for the Tigers with a scoreless ninth, and LSU closed out Mizzou in the bottom of the frame.
The series finale between Mizzou and LSU will take place Sunday at 1 p.m.