Missouri Baptist (18-4) received nine votes in the first regular season NAIA Top 25 rating.
Rio Grande (12-11) was victimized by two unearned runs, which made a loser of freshman Ryan Dwyer. Dwyer (1-1) pitched well in the loss and deserved a better fate.
The score was dead even at 2-2 when the Redmen plated their two runs in the fifth inning. Missouri Baptist scored a pair of runs in the 6th and decided the game.
Sophomore second baseman Kenta Sato (Fukuoka, Japan) was the top offensive performer for Rio Grande. Sato went 2-for-3 at the plate with two doubles. Junior Michael Warren also provided an RBI hit for the Redmen.
Rio wasted two key scoring chances in both the sixth and seventh, leaving the bases loaded in both frames.
Rio Grande head coach Brad Warnimont said Missouri Baptist was a quality team. “They were legit,” Warnimont said. “They were better than anyone in our league.”
Rio posted a 2-6 record on the spring trip. They will face Cedarville on March 23 at Cedarville. The first game start time is set for 1 p.m.