HOOVER, Ala. – The Missouri baseball team kept alive its hopes for an NCAA Tournament berth, beating Texas A&M on Tuesday night in the first round of the SEC Tournament.
Missouri pasted Aggies pitching, scoring at least one run in six of the first seven innings. A grand slam from Robbie Glendinning in the fourth was the biggest highlight and the dagger in the Tigers’ 12-7 win.
The loss eliminates Texas A&M (36-21) from the tournament. The Aggies now head back to College Station to wait and wonder. Texas A&M will make the NCAA Tournament when bids are announced Monday, but a better showing in Hoover would have strengthened its case for a 2-seed.
Like South Carolina before it, Missouri (36-21) was facing do-or-die. And just like South Carolina before it, Missouri ‘did.’
Texas A&M couldn’t blame the 106-minute rain delay, either. Tigers hitters were on starter John Doxakis from the word go. They chased him in the second inning upon his allowing three runs. It was reliever Taylor Chafin who gave up the Aggies’ lead, though. Twice.
Matt Berler hit a two-run home run to tie things at four later in the second inning, then, after Texas A&M had regained the lead with two runs in the third, Chafin gave up the homer to Glendinning. That made it 8-6, Tigers, and Texas A&M never led again.
Missouri may need to win the entire tournament this week to make it in the NCAAs. It was, at best, a bubble team entering the week. For now, though, the Tigers have their chance. They play LSU in the second game Wednesday.
At least, it’s supposed to be Wednesday. Tuesday’s Game 1 between South Carolina and Vanderbilt lasted longer than four hours and the 106-minute delay in Missouri’s game pushed things back even further. As of the game’s ending at 7:22 p.m., the final two games of the day were still scheduled to be played. If they couldn’t be fit in Tuesday night, they would likely push to Wednesday.
What’s next for Texas A&M?
The regular season is finished for the Aggies. They will be in the NCAA Tournament come announcement day Monday, but could be a 3-seed instead of a 2-seed after the upset and sputtering finish to the regular season.
What’s next for Missouri?
The Tigers live to play two more days, anyway. The first round of games are single-elimination at the SEC Tournament. Everything else is double-elimination. Missouri will get 2-seed LSU in the second game of the second round, currently scheduled for Wednesday.