Keenen Maddox Hits Walk-Off Homer to Lift Bears Past Missouri, 5-4
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- Freshman left fielder Keenen Maddox swatted two home runs, the second a two-run walk-off shot to give the Missouri State baseball team a 5-4 victory over Missouri Wednesday evening at Hammons Field.
Maddox hammered a 1-2 pitch off MU closer Jeff Emens over the bullpen in left, scoring Trevor Rogers, pinch running after Tyler Paxson's leadoff single, to give the Bears the win. Maddox also hit a solo shot in the fifth, ending starter Jeff Scardino’s no-hit bid, on the way to a 3-for-4, three RBI, three run night.
Scardino retired the first 10 Bears and faced the minimum through 13 hitters, finishing the game with two hits allowed over 6.1 frames before handing the game to Springfield native Tyler Clark with a 3-1 lead and one out in the seventh. Christian Overstreet hit an RBI single to center and Curt Courtwright’s ground ball that the shortstop booted let Maddox score to tie the game at 3-3.
MSU’s Mike Kickham was equal to Scardino, tying a Missouri State season-high with 11 strikeouts and scattering six hits and three runs, one earned, over seven innings.
Freshman Clay Murphy started the eighth and gave the lead back to the Tigers at 4-3 following a walk and two singles. Grant Gordon (2-1) relieved him with two on and nobody out in the eighth, throwing to third on a sacrifice attempt to cut down the lead runner before striking out the next five Tigers on the way to his second win of the year.
The win was the Bears’ first walk-off this year and the first walk-off home run since last year’s Missouri Valley Conference Tournament. MSU improved to 13-20 overall, while Missouri fell to 18-14.
Missouri State returns to action Tuesday, April 20 with a 6 p.m. contest at Saint Louis. The Bears have a rare mid-season weekend off this week after being unable to fill the void left by Northern Iowa dropping baseball after the 2009 season.