Huskers Fall to Missouri, 4-3

Jake Opitz went 2-for-3 with a homer, but it was not enough, as Evan Frey's RBI single in the top of the eighth broke a 3-all tie and lifted Missouri to a 4-3 victory Saturday night at Hawks Field.

Frey's two-out RBI single in the top off of NU reliever Drew Bowman (3-1) plated Kyle Mach with the go-ahead run, as Missouri (20-5, 2-0 Big 12) overcame an early 3-1 deficit en route to their 14th straight win.

Nebraska (12-9, 1-4 Big 12) had ample opportunities against Missouri starter Rick Zagone, putting the tying run in scoring position four times over the last six innings, including the seventh and ninth, but could capitalize and push the tying run across.

Jake Opitz, who went 2-for-3 with a homer, was hit by a Zagone pitch to open the ninth. Mitch Abeita moved Opitz into scoring position with a sacrifice, but the Tiger left-hander retired the final two hitters to cap his first complete game of the year.

"We had a couple of chances to get over the top, but we didn't do it," Nebraska Head Coach Mike Anderson said after the Huskers' third one-run loss in conference play. "This team needs to get over the hump, win a game like this and keep moving on."

Zagone upped his record to 4-0 on the season, scattered eight hits and striking out four without a walk in his second career complete game.

The Huskers wasted little time in the bottom of the first, as back-to-back doubles by DJ Belfonte and Ryan Wehrle gave the Huskers a quick 1-0 lead. Nebraska added to its margin in the bottom of the second on Opitz's fourth homer of the year, a solo shot to left, to take a 2-0 lead.

Missouri got on the scoreboard in third, as a hit batter, a walk and a single loaded the bases before
Ryan Lollis drove in Frey with a grounder to first.

Craig Corriston gave Nebraska a 3-1 advantage in the bottom of the third, driving in his team-best 18th RBI of the season. Belftonte got the inning started with a single before a Wehrle sacrifice moved him into scoring position before Corriston made it a two-run lead two batters later with a single to center.

DJ Belfonte went 2-for-4 and scored twice, as he and Opitz combined for half of Nebraska's eight hits, but NU was held scoreless after the third.

Lollis, who went 2-for-5 with three of MU's RBIs, did more damage in the fifth, belting a two-run homer to left off of Husker starter Charlie Shirek to tie the score at three. The blast was Lollis' second homer of the year, and the first homer that Shirek had allowed in 30 innings this season.

Shirek allowed three runs on six hits over five innings, but did not factor in the decision. Bowman took the loss in relief, allowing one run on three hits over 3.2 innings of work.

The Huskers and Tigers will wrap up the three-game series on Sunday afternoon, as Johnny Dorn (3-1, 5.40 ERA) takes the hill for the Big Red. First pitch is set for 1:05 p.m. and the game will be carried across the state on the Husker Sports Radio Network and on the Internet at Huskers.com.


 

    Missouri at #26 Nebraska
                   Mar 24, 2007 at Lincoln, NE (Hawks Field)

Missouri 4 (20-5,2-0 Big 12)
Player                    AB  R  H RBI BB SO PO  A LOB  Avg.
Frey, Evan cf............  3  1  1  1   0  1  4  0   0  .303
Bond, Brock 2b...........  3  0  1  0   2  0  0  3   4  .306
McKee, John 1b...........  4  1  1  0   0  1 14  0   0  .253
Lollis, Ryan rf..........  5  1  2  3   0  1  3  0   0  .351
Coleman, Trevor c........  4  0  0  0   1  2  4  0   2  .309
Priday, Jacob dh.........  5  0  1  0   0  1  0  0   1  .229
Senne, Aaron lf..........  3  0  1  0   1  1  1  0   0  .267
Mach, Kyle 3b............  4  1  2  0   0  1  0  4   2  .323
Arndt, Gary ss...........  3  0  0  0   1  0  1  4   2  .266
Zagone, Rick p...........  0  0  0  0   0  0  0  3   0     -
Totals................... 34  4  9  4   5  8 27 14  11

Nebraska 3 (12-10,1-4 Big 12)
Player                    AB  R  H RBI BB SO PO  A LOB  Avg.
Belfonte, DJ cf..........  4  2  2  0   0  0  1  0   3  .308
Wehrle, Ryan ss..........  3  0  1  1   0  2  3  5   0  .189
Brown, Andrew 1b.........  4  0  0  0   0  0 11  1   1  .239
Corriston, Craig rf......  4  0  1  1   0  1  1  0   0  .385
Gerch, Andy lf...........  4  0  0  0   0  0  0  0   2  .259
Tezak, Jeff dh...........  4  0  0  0   0  1  0  0   0  .364
Opitz, Jake 2b...........  3  1  2  1   0  0  3  2   0  .296
Abeita, Mitch c..........  3  0  1  0   0  0  6  3   1  .267
Mort, Jake 3b............  4  0  1  0   0  0  1  2   0  .240
Shirek, Charlie p........  0  0  0  0   0  0  1  1   0     -
 Bowman, Drew p..........  0  0  0  0   0  0  0  1   0     -
 Weber, Thad p...........  0  0  0  0   0  0  0  0   0  .258
Totals................... 33  3  8  3   0  4 27 15   7

Score by Innings                    R  H  E
Missouri............ 001 020 010 -  4  9  2
Nebraska............ 111 000 000 -  3  8  0

E - Frey(1); Mach(2). DP - Huskers 1. LOB - Tigers 11; Huskers 7. 2B -
Belfonte, D.(5); Wehrle, R.(2); Opitz, J.(5). HR - Lollis(2); Opitz, J.(4).
HBP - Frey 2; McKee; Opitz, J.. SH - Belfonte, D.(6); Wehrle, R.(3); Abeita,
M.(4). CS - Bond(1).

Missouri               IP  H  R ER BB SO AB BF  NP   ERA
Zagone, Rick........  9.0  8  3  3  0  4 33 37 111  3.65

Nebraska               IP  H  R ER BB SO AB BF  NP   ERA
Shirek, Charlie.....  5.0  6  3  3  4  5 20 27 110  4.65
Bowman, Drew........  3.2  3  1  1  1  2 13 14  56  3.38
Weber, Thad.........  0.1  0  0  0  0  1  1  1   4  0.00

Win - Zagone (4-0).  Loss - Bowman, D. (3-1).  Save - None.
HBP - by Shirek, C. (Frey); by Shirek, C. (Frey); by Shirek, C. (McKee); by
Zagone (Opitz, J.). Inherited runners/scored: Weber, T. 1/0. Pitches/strikes:
Zagone 111/79; Shirek, C. 110/58; Bowman, D. 56/40; Weber, T. 4/3.
Umpires - HP: Dan Novak  1B: Patrick Spieler  3B: Jeff Henrichs
Start: 5:05p.m.   Time: 2:39   Attendance: 3557


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