Tigers baseball wastes fantastic performance from Houck, lose to Vanderbilt 2–0

Houck allowed just two hits in the extra-innings loss.

It’s not often that a team loses a game where its starting pitcher throws nine innings, strikes out 11 batters, allows two hits and doesn’t give up a run.

Unfortunately for sophomore Tanner Houck and the Missouri baseball team, that rarity became a reality Saturday. The Tigers (14–11, 0–5 SEC) were tamed by No. 4 Vanderbilt (19–4, 3–2 SEC) as the Commodores bested Missouri 2–0 in 11 innings.

Houck squared off against Vanderbilt sophomore Kyle Wright in a game that could be described only as a pitcher’s duel.

Wright dominated Missouri’s lineup, striking out 10 batters in six innings of work. Missouri managed three hits and four walks off of the right-hander, but the team was never able to string anything together.

Houck turned in an even more impressive performance as he carried a perfect game into the fifth inning and a no-hitter into the sixth. Vanderbilt’s only chance to score came in the sixth inning, when junior centerfielder Jake Ring threw out senior first baseman Kyle Smith at home plate to end the inning.

In the ninth, Missouri was on the verge of its first-ever win against Vanderbilt and its first Southeastern Conference win of the season.

Senior first baseman Zach Lavy singled into right field to lead off the inning then advanced to second on a wild pitch with no outs. Freshman Brian Sharp, who had been showing bunt earlier in the at bat, was allowed to swing away but was unable to do anything with a 2–0 count except strike out.

The Commodores then walked sophomore catcher Brett Bond in attempt to set up a double play. Sophomore third baseman Shane Benes made that double play easier when he didn’t run out of the box after hitting a ground ball to short.

Missouri would hold out until the 11th inning. In the 11th, Vanderbilt scored two runs off of redshirt sophomore Cole Bartlett for the game’s only runs.

Missouri take on the Commodores for the final game of the series at noon Sunday at Taylor Stadium. The game can be viewed on the SEC Network.

Edited by George Roberson | groberson@themaneater.com

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