HOOVER, Ala. – Mizzou Baseball’s season came to an end with a 7-0 loss to sixth-seeded Vanderbilt in the opening round of the SEC Tournament on Tuesday morning (May 24) at Hoover Met Stadium. Mizzou sophomore righty Tanner Houck (Collinsville, Ill.) was tremendous through 6.0 innings of work, but took the loss after allowing a pair of earned runs (four total) with six strikeouts and just one walk while scattering just five hits. In two starts against Vanderbilt this year, Houck has gone 15.0 innings and allowed just two earned runs and three walks with 20 strikeouts. He took the loss as he closes the year 5-6 with a 2.99 ERA and 106 strikeouts in 105.1 innings pitched. He did that while making his second consecutive start on just four day’s rest.
Vanderbilt’s Patrick Raby earned the win, improving to 7-1 on the year, after tossing 6.0 shutout innings, allowing just two Mizzou hits with four strikeouts and two walks. Mizzou closes the year 26-30 while Vanderbilt improves to 42-15 and will play No. 3 seed Texas A&M in the second round tomorrow.
Raby made easy work of the Tigers in the first inning, using just 13 pitches to retire the side. Houck looked up to the task early as well, retiring Vanderbilt on nine pitches in the first, picking up a strikeout of Vanderbilt CF Bryan Reynolds to end the frame.
After striking out the side in the third on some filthy stuff, Houck surrendered a leadoff double to Reynolds in the fourth. But he picked up a pair of strikeouts and a pop out to escape the jam as Houck struck out six through four innings of work.
Mizzou didn’t threaten against Raby until the top of the sixth inning as a walk by Kirby McGuire (Round Rock, Texas) and a two-out single by Ryan Howard (St. Charles, Mo.) put two men on for Zach Lavy (Auxvasse, Mo.), but he popped up to strand a pair.
After Mizzou stranded a pair in the sixth, Vanderbilt opened its half of the sixth with a leadoff walk by 1B Ethan Paul and then executed a hit-and-run perfectly after a hit from Jeren Kendall to put runners on the corners with no outs. Kendall then stole second and Reynolds hit his second double of the day to give Vanderbilt a 2-0 lead. Vandy then scored two more runs on a pair of errors to extend the lead to 4-0 after six innings of action.
Senior LHP Austin Tribby (Springfield, Mo.) relieved Houck and tossed an easy 1-2-3 inning in the seventh. Pinch hitter Julian Infante then hit a two-run homer off of Tribby in the eighth to extend the lead to 6-0. Vandy tacked on another on a two-out RBI single by Kyle Smith to take a 7-0 lead. Howard tallied his second hit of the day to lead off the ninth, but Mizzou went quietly after that.