SPRINGFIELD – Zack Stewart went 3-for-4 with two doubles, a home run and four RBI, but Missouri State was unable to slow a red-hot Evansville team in a 7-4 loss Sunday afternoon at Hammons Field.
Evansville won for the 16th time in 18 games to move to 16-7 overall and 3-0 in Missouri Valley Conference play, while the Bears fell to 11-11 and 0-3 in league games.
Stewart staked the Bears to a 2-0 lead with a two-run homer in the second inning after Mason Hull’s double, and Evansville pulled even by bringing home a leadoff walk in both the third and fourth frames, then finished the fourth with a two-out, three-run homer from Eric Roberts for a 5-2 advantage after an error prolonged the inning.
Roberts added a two-run shot in the sixth to extend the margin to 7-2, and Stewart swatted a two-run double in the eighth to make it 7-4. Six of Evansville’s seven runs were scored with two outs.
The Bears used five pitchers on the day, beginning with Jake Eddington going 2.2 innings and allowing one hit in the start. Taeg Gollert got the final out of the eighth and the first out of the ninth while going 1-for-4 at the plate to become the first MSU player to both pitch and record a hit in a game since Alex Jefferson on May 8, 2016 against Southern Illinois.
The Bears close a four-game home stand Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. against Oral Roberts. Missouri State won the season’s first meeting with the Golden Eagles by an 8-5 final on Feb. 22 in Tulsa.