Tigers climbs to second seed with late-season surge in Big 12

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Coach Tim Jamieson wishes people would stop being so surprised that his Missouri team is playing so well. But even he struggles to explain the Tigers' surge to second in the Big 12 standings.

"You look at our numbers, they're pretty average," Jamieson said Tuesday at a media day previewing the Big 12 baseball tournament. "The hitting numbers are average, the pitching numbers are average, the defensive numbers are pretty good. But you can't measure heart in statistics. This team has an unbelievable amount of heart."

Evan Frey had a prime display of that determination last weekend in a three-game sweep of Oklahoma State that sealed the tournament's No. 2 seed for the Tigers. Frey raced back to catch a fly ball and then smashed into the centerfield wall. He spent a few moments laid out on the warning track.

"Guys have been selling out for each other. That's a consummate team player right there when a guy gives up his own body to make a play in a game that's undecided," said Jamieson, who shared the conference's coach of the year honor with Augie Garrido of league champion Texas.

"He's kind of been the heart and blood of our team, but we've had a lot of guys do the same things he does every day and that's kind of been who we've been."

Missouri is 11-1 in one-run games this season and went 16-6 in road games, including 11-4 in Big 12 play.

"I'm anxious to see us play again," Jamieson said. "That's kind of how the team's been. They're just a lot of fun to be around."

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