Mizzou Loses Opener to KU
LAWRENCE, KS - The Mizzou baseball lost a tough, 1-0, game to archrival Kansas on Thursday night in the first of a three-game series at Hoglund Ballpark. The Tigers wasted a great start from sophomore lefty Rob Zastryzny, who pitched 8.0 innings of one-run baseball, allowing just seven hits.
Dane Opel and Blake Brown combined for four of the Tigers' seven hits on the night as they each finished with two in the game. The loss drops Mizzou to 27-25 and 9-13 in Big 12 play. Kansas starter Frank Duncan earned his sixth win of the season as he tossed a complete game shutout, allowing just seven hits while striking out five and walking just one. He threw 114 pitches in the win. Zastryzny was the tough-luck loser for the Tigers on Thursday night. After the Tigers went 1-2-3 in the top of the first inning, Zastryzny allowed a pair of singles in the first put got out of the jam on three flyouts in the inning. KU starter Frank Duncan continued to deal in the second as he once again sat the Tigers down in order, including a strikeout of Opel. Both pitchers continued to deal, giving up a combined seven hits through six innings.
The Tigers' best chance to score in that span came in the top of the sixth inning as Eric Garcia singled up the middle and two-hole hitter Dillon Everett was hit by a pitch, putting two men on with one out. But Ben Turner and Andreas Plackis flew out. Zastryzny then came out in the bottom of the sixth and retired the KU order on just five pitches as the scoreless tie moved to the seventh inning. The Tigers threatened again in the seventh inning as Opel and Brown hit back-to-back singles with one out. That brought in Scott Sommerfeld with a chance to bring in the go-ahead run, but he grounded into a 6-4-3 double play to end the threat. Kansas then came out in the bottom of the seventh and got a two-out double by Michael Suiter, scoring Zack Elgie. On the next play, Ka'iana Eldredge singled, but Champagne gunned down Suiter at the plate to send the game to the eighth winning with KU on top, 1-0. His play saved a run. That was big as Mizzou put two men aboard in the bottom of the ninth with one out after Plackis walked and Conner Mach singled. That brought Opel up and he ripped a hard hit grounded that looked destined for extra bases down the third base line. But Jordan Dreiling, inserted into the game for defense earlier in the game, picked the ball, stepped on third and threw out Opel at first for the game-winning double play.
Game two of the series will be Saturday at 6 p.m.