Bears Overcome Late Six-Run Deficit to Top GCU

STILLWATER, Okla. – Missouri State scored seven runs in the final two innings of Saturday’s elimination game of the NCAA Stillwater regional, getting home runs from Drake Baldwin, Spencer Nivens and Mason Hull in the final two frames for an 8-7 victory over Grand Canyon at O’Brate Stadium.

Down to their final six outs and trailing 7-1 after GCU (41-21) hit four home runs in the first seven innings, Baldwin got the rally started with a two-run homer in the eighth, his 17th of the season, that landed well over the 402 sign in center field for a 7-3 deficit.

Then in the ninth, Will Duff was hit by a pitch and Walker Jenkins walked to set up a three-run bomb by Spencer Nivens, his 10th of the year, to cut the gap to 7-6.

Grand Canyon committed an error to let Baldwin on base after that, and Mason Hull capitalized with his 15th round-tripper of the season, curling the go-ahead homer inside the left field foul pole for an 8-7 advantage.

Grad transfer Jake McMahill (2-1) finished off a stellar 4.2-inning relief appearance to seal the win, allowing three hits and striking out a season-high seven batters. Adam Link went four innings in his 17th start to tie the MSU single-season record for pitching starts.

The Bears improved their home run to total to 104 on the year, which now ranks second in school and sixth in Missouri Valley Conference history. It’s also the most home runs hit by any Valley school since 1999.

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