WICHITA, Kan.- No. 2 Missouri State (39-15) defeated No. 3 Creighton (36-20), 9-5, forcing the Bluejays into an elimination game with UNI at 3 p.m.
The Bears knocked out CU starter Mike Nihsen in 3.1 innings and hit around the bull pen, as six-of-nine batters ended with a multiple hit game. Nihsen (5-2) suffered the loss, giving up four earned runs on eight hits and lasted through 18 batters. Kevin Dooley was roughed up for five earned runs in 1.1 innings, before Jack VanLeur was able to stop the Bears for a scoreless 3.1 innings.
Creighton didn’t lack offense, however, as Joe Servais delivered a game-high three hits and three runs. Collectively the Bluejays tagged MVC Pitcher of the Year Tim Clubb with 11 hits and four earned runs. The sophomore struck out two in 7.2 innings, but salvaged the win and remained undefeated this season at 11-0. Matt Frevert shut down the CU rally with 1.1 hitless innings to close out the game.
Missouri State’s Nolan Keane singled in Ben Woodbury to take an early 1-0 lead in the first. Woodbury had reached on a double in the right-center gap.
The teams matched each other with three runs a piece in the fourth inning, before MSU put some distance in the score with a five-run fifth. A Kyle Paul hit scored two and sparked the offense as Curt Courtwright, Woodbury and Keane followed in order with RBI singles.
Creighton pecked away at the lead, plating one run in the sixth and eighth, but the Bluejays never managed a hit off of the Bears’ reliever, holding the score to 9-5.
Creighton faces off against Northern Iowa in an elimination game at 3 p.m. Missouri State faces the winner of Wichita State and Southern Illinois at 3 p.m., Friday afternoon.