Bears Bounce Back to Claim Series With 10-7 Victory Over SIU Edwardsville
March 10, 2012
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. - Missouri State rebounded from a lackluster performance in the first game of Saturday's doubleheader with SIU Edwardsville to claim the rubber match of the series with a 10-7 victory over the Cougars in the nightcap at Hammons Field. The Bears scored eight times in the bottom of the second inning to build a 10-run lead, then withstood a valiant comeback attempt by the visitors to improve to 12-4 on the season.
Brent Seifert went 3-for-5, scored two runs and drove in three more to lead the Bears' offense, which touched up five SIUE pitchers for 10 hits on the day. Spiker Helms reached base in four of his five trips to the plate, scoring twice and driving in a run, while Brock Chaffin added a pair of RBIs and Luke Voit chipped in with two hits and a run batted-in.
After being held scoreless for 8 2/3 innings in game one, the Bears wasted little time in kicking its offense into high gear. Missouri State plated two runs in the first after Helms doubled to left to lead-off the frame, and Seifert brought him in with a one-out triple to right. Next, Chaffin's ground ball to first chased home Seifert to make it a 2-0 contest.
Missouri State got the wheels rolling in the second with a lead-off walk to Trey Massenberg, a bunt single by Eric Cheray and a fielder's choice sac bunt by Brett Marshall to produce the first run of the inning. A second base on balls, this time issued to Helms, preceded Seifert's line-drive single to right-center that drove in both Cheray and Marshall to stretch the MSU lead to 5-0. Chaffin and Voit followed with back-to-back run-scoring singles, and a Cougar fielding error coupled with a wild pitch combined to allow four more Bears' runs to cross the plate. Finally, Helms drew his second walk of the frame--this time with the bases loaded--to force home the Bears' eighth and final run of the inning.
The eight-run frame marked the Bears' biggest offensive output of the season and their highest run total in a single inning since scoring 11 times in the sixth inning of a May 26, 2010, game against Southern Illinois.
However, the Cougars (8-7) began chipping away at the deficit against MSU starter Cody Schumacher with a four-run rally in the top of the third that was highlighted by Joel Greatting's two-run single that barely eluded a diving Seifert at third base. They would add single tallies in the fourth, sixth and seventh innings to pull to within three runs, but Erik Shannahan would record the final two outs of the seventh, stranding a pair of runners in scoring position on his inning-ending strikeout of Michael Monaghan.
Burgess would take over in the eighth and slam the door shut on the Cougars comeback bid. After walking the first batter he faced, Burgess retired six of the next seven hitters to put the finishing touches on his third save of the season.
Grant Gordon (1-0) picked up the victory in relief of Schumacher, working 3 1/3 innings and allowing just one earned run on two hits while fanning a pair of Cougars.
Travis Becherer led the SIUE charge, going 3-for-3 with a run scored and an RBI, and Greatting ended his day 2-for-5 with a run scored to go along with his two third-inning RBIs.
Missouri State wraps up its five-game homestand Tuesday (March 13) evening with a 6:30 p.m. matchup against Purdue.