Dallas Baptist Spoils Bears' Home Opener, 1-0
March 14, 2014
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. - Cody Schumacher held Dallas Baptist scoreless for eight innings of Missouri State's home opener Friday afternoon, but the Patriots scratched out a ninth-inning run to come away with a 1-0 victory, sending the Bears to their fourth consecutive defeat.
DBU starting pitcher Paul Voelker matched Schumacher pitch for pitch, holding the Bears to just two hits and three walks while striking out eight over eight scoreless innings. Reliever Brandon Koch finished the job, getting Spencer Johnson to tap back to the mound for the final out after a pair of two-out walks put the tying and go-ahead runs on base.
Trevin Sonnier's two-out single provided the lone run of the afternoon, capping the Patriots' (13-4) ninth-inning rally that was fueled a pair of walks from MSU freshman reliever Bryan Young (2-1). After Schumacher came up with a critical strikeout of No. 3 hitter Austin Listi to thwart a DBU scoring threat in the eighth, Young issued a lead-off pass to Daniel Salters to start the ninth, then put KJ Alexander on via a second base-on-balls after retiring Justin Wall and David Martinelli for the first two outs of the inning.
Sonnier drove Young's 1-0 pitch back through the box, giving Salters plenty of time to race around from second with the game-winning run.
Missouri State mounted a two-out threat of its own in the home half of the ninth after leadoff man Tate Matheny was punched out on strikes on a full count pitch from Koch, and Dylan Becker bounced out to second. Eric Cheray drew a four-pitch walk, and Matt Fultz reached thanks to a free pass from Koch as well.
But, after working the count to 3-2, Johnson's slow roller toward the first base side of the infield was gloved by Koch, who sprinted to first ahead of Johnson for the final out and his first save of the season.
The late DBU run made a winner of Voelker (3-1), who held the potent Bears' offense in check throughout the day. After allowing an infield single to Matheny to begin the game, Voelker coaxed a double-play ball off the bat of Becker to begin a stretch that would see the right-hander retire 18 of the next 21 MSU hitters, including 11 in a row at one point. The junior would not give up another hit until Johnson's one-out single to left in the seventh - the first and only Missouri State hit to reach the outfield safely.
Schumacher was equally as impressive in his fourth start of the season. The redshirt senior retired 11 of the first 13 DBU hitters of the game before running into two-out trouble in the fourth. With runners at first and second courtesy of a walk to Wall and a Martinelli single, Schumacher induced an inning-ending fly to center from Alexander to escape the situation and keep it a scoreless game.
The Bears' right-hander would not allow another Patriot baserunner to reach scoring position until the eighth, when Camden Duzenack singled with one out and moved to third on Mike Wesolowski's two-out hit.
Young (2-1) shouldered the loss for the Bears, allowing the lone tally of the day on just one hit and two walks.
With inclement weather in the forecast for Sunday, the final game of Missouri State's non-conference baseball series with Dallas Baptist has been rescheduled as part of a 12:05 p.m. doubleheader Saturday (March 15) at Hammons Field.
To accommodate the scheduling change, both single-game and season tickets for Sunday's contest are redeemable for any other Missouri State home game this season, either through the MSU Athletics Box Office at JQH Arena or on game days at Hammons Field.