Mizzou baseball hangs on to beat Texas 9-8
HOUSTON - The Missouri baseball team held onto its late-inning lead by a thread, defeating the Texas Longhorns 9-8 on Sunday afternoon in a walk and error-filled affair at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas and improving to 6-5.
Texas managed four runs in the final three innings of the game, which was the Tigers' third in the Shriners Hospitals for Children College Classic, but it wasn't enough. Missouri put up five in the sixth inning and added an unearned insurance run in the ninth to issue the Longhorns' second loss of their season.
Tigers second baseman Mark Vierling started off the scoring when he walked in the first inning swiped third base on a wild pitch. The throw from Texas catcher Silas Ardoin was about three feet high, flying into left field and allowing Vierling to trot home, giving the Tigers an early lead.
Much of Missouri's later offensive outburst was due to the play of designated hitter Peter Zimmermann. Zimmermann drove in three runs on three hits in five at bats, including a monstrous home run to left center field in the fifth. The senior from St. Louis knew it was gone as soon as it left the bat, and stared the ball as it flied into the seats.
The Tigers' starting pitcher, true freshman Spencer Miles from Rock Bridge High School, made his first career start and performed well. Miles allowed three earned runs - two from inherited runners after he left the game in the fifth - over four innings of work. From there, reliever Shane Wilhelm (W, 1-0) and closer Trey Dillard (S, 2) did just well enough to hold off a high-powered Texas offense.
Missouri will play its home opener this season on Friday, when the Tigers will take on Western Illinois at Taylor Stadium.