No. 12 LSU tags McClain for 5 runs in the fifth to beat Missouri baseball
Jamieson: “We did some things well offensively and came up a little bit short.”
Apr. 16, 2016
For his fourth start in a row, one-time ace Reggie McClain was on the losing side of the ball. This time, No. 9 Louisiana State smashed the redshirt senior pitcher en route to a 7–5 win over the Missouri baseball team.
Mizzou jumped out to a quick 2–0 lead when senior first baseman Zach Lavy laced a ball down the right field line for his seventh triple of the season. Juniors Jake Ring and Ryan Howard both scored.
The Tigers from Columbia then went on a hitting drought, going runless for four straight innings. In the meantime, LSU went to work on McClain.
After grabbing one run off McClain in the second inning, LSU exploded for five runs in the fifth inning on five hits. All five runs were scored with two outs.
“(In the fifth) inning, (McClain) missed about three or four locations,” coach Tim Jamieson said. “Instead of going in or away, it ended up being over the middle of the plate.”
Yet, Missouri kept kicking. Sophomore catcher Brett Bond drove in Lavy with a single to left-center field and then scored himself on a bloop double from freshman designated hitter Marquise Doherty.
“I was pumped,” Doherty said. “Not necessarily for me but more so because I feel like it was momentum that our team needed at the time, especially after that five-run inning.”
Then, junior Kirby McGuire smashed his second homerun of the season to bring the score back to 6–5 in the seventh inning. The blast ended LSU pitcher Jared Poche’s night after six innings of work.
Mizzou kept McClain in the game until he hit the first batter he faced in the seventh. McClain allowed seven earned runs on 10 hits and one walk before turning it over to redshirt sophomore Cole Bartlett.
Bartlett allowed one run to score before forcing freshman right fielder Antoine Duplantis to ground into a 3-6-3 double play. Missouri had two innings to come back from a 7–5 deficit.
Fortunately for the majority of the 1,470 fans at Taylor Stadium, which was bathed in the purple of LSU, Missouri was unable to muster anything in the final two innings. Mizzou did not record a single hit in the eighth or ninth and struck out three times.
Game two of the series is scheduled for at 2 p.m. on Saturday at Taylor Stadium. The game should feature an intense pitching matchup between LSU sophomore Alex Lange and Mizzou sophomore Tanner Houck. The game can be viewed on SEC Network + and heard on KTGR 1580 AM/100.5 FM.