MO State HS Sports

Baseball Secures Series Win Over No. 6 Florida With Comeback Victory

Javyn Pimental

COLUMBIA, Mo. – University of Missouri baseball rode the familiar combination of a strong starting mound effort and shutdown relief work to a 4-3 come-from-behind victory over No. 6 Florida to clinch a Southeastern Conference series win over the Gators Saturday afternoon at Taylor Stadium.

Mizzou (14-18, 3-8 SEC), which secured its first series win over Florida (17-13, 6-5 SEC) since 2015 with the victory, scored all four of its runs with two outs en route to extending its win streak to a season-best four-straight games.

Fueled by another critical run-producing hit from junior catcher Jedier Hernandez, the Tigers scored a pair of sixth-inning runs to negate a Jac Caglianone two-run homer that handed Florida a 3-2 edge in the top half of the inning. Hernandez, who drove in the game-winning run in the 11th inning of Friday’s series opener, lined a two-out RBI single to center to bring in Trevor Austin with the tying run, before a wild pitch chased home Jackson Lovich with the go-ahead run moments later.

After Mizzou starting pitcher Javyn Pimental held the Gators in check through the first five innings, relievers Brock Lucas and Ryan Magdic joined forces to limit UF to just the two runs on Caglianone’s homer over the final 4.0 frames. Lucas worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the seventh, striking out the side to preserve the Tigers’ lead. Magic avoided trouble in the eighth after a Luke Heyman single and the lone Mizzou defensive miscue of the day put runners on the corners. The left-hander promptly extinguished the threat by inducing an inning-ending liner to left.

Magdic faced little resistance in the ninth, closing out the win and his first collegiate save by retiring the Gators in order — including getting Caglianone to pop out to left for the final out of the contest. 

After pulling out a 2-1 win in the series opening game Friday, the Tigers rode that momentum to a quick start in game two. Just as he did in Friday’s contest, Jeric Curtis sparked a first-inning rally with a leadoff hit, before a walk to Jackson Beaman and a sacrifice bunt by Austin set the table the rally. With two out, the first of four wild pitches by UF starter Liam Peterson brought in Curtis with the game’s first tally, before Kaden Peer lined a single to right to hand MU and Pimental an early two-run advantage.

Pimental was equally as impressive in the early stages of the game, inducing rally-killing, 4-6-3 double-play grounders in the first and third innings to keep the Gators scoreless. The lefty retired nine of 10 UF hitters from the second through the fifth innings, but a hit batsman, a balk and a two-out infield single by Jaylen Guy gave the visitors their first run in the fifth.

After Pimental yielded to Lucas to open the sixth, the Gators struck quickly against the Mizzou sophomore to seize their first lead of the series. Leadoff man Cade Kurland lofted a base hit to right to open the inning, before Caglianone launched a two-run shot to right two pitches later.

Mizzou had an answer, however, as Austin delivered a one-out single to left and Lovich drew a walk to give the Tigers a pair of baserunners. Following a pop up, Hernandez drilled a 2-0 Peterson offering into center, bringing Austin around from second with the tying run. Peterson’s fourth errant pitch allowed Lovich to cross the plate with what would prove to be the deciding run.


  • With the victory, the Tigers handed head coach Kerrick Jackson his first SEC series victory.
  • Missouri notched its seventh win in 38 all-time meetings with Florida.
  • The Tigers stretched their win streak to a season-high four straight games, dating back to April 2.
  • Mizzou last won four in 2023, when it posted six straight victories from March 12-22.
  • The SEC series win over the sixth-ranked Gators represents the first for the Tigers against a top 10 club since sweeping No. 4 Tennessee (March 17-19, 2023).
  • Lovich and Austin both extended their respective on-base streaks to five games apiece.
  • Lucas allowed his first two runs during SEC play on Caglianone’s home run. The MU right-hander also saw his string of 11 1/3 consecutive scoreless innings (dating back to March 17) come to an end.
  • Lucas won for the second time in four games this week to improve to 4-0 on the season, matching Friday’s game one winner, Carter Rustad (4-4), for the team lead in mound victories.
  • Curtis extended his hitting streak to four games and has scored a run in four consecutive contests.
  • Magdic registered his first save as a Tiger, allowing just one hit in his 2.0 innings.
  • The Tigers registered two stolen bases to record their fourth consecutive game with two or more steals. 
  • Saturday’s announced attendance of 2,209 represented a 2024 season best and the Tigers’ largest home crowd since May 2, 2023 vs. Kansas.
  • The Tigers have led at the conclusion of all but three of the 30 innings in the series to date.
  • With their four two-out runs on the day, the Tigers hiked their season total to 71 two-out RBIs. MU is now hitting .282 (105-for-372) with two outs this season.

The Tigers will conclude their series with Florida Sunday (April 7) with a 1 p.m. (CDT) contest at Taylor Stadium.

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This article is provided by University of Missouri Athletics