Fittingly, upperclassmen came through for the Owls on Senior Night, providing key hits and relief pitching for the come-from-behind victory -- only the third in their last eight league games.
Marshall struck first, with three runs in the third inning. A lead-off double by junior Zach Bishop and junior Henry Tietz' single produced the first run. Senior Collin Brennan stroked an RBI single and a bases-loaded walk forced in the final score.
Senior Aaron Skinner had escaped trouble through four shutout innings, stranding eight Kirksville runners, but couldn't get out of the fifth. With the bases loaded, senior Adam Pennington and junior Jonathan Broce singled to chase Skinner.
Senior Jordan Pannell relieved and induced a grounder for the second out, but that allowed the tying run to score. A walk filled the sacks and a bobbled bouncer to shortstop and wild throw to first base let two runs cross. The sixth of the frame came on a steal of home on a rundown play.
Senior Tyler Hunt knocked in two Owls with a single in the bottom of the fifth, but the Tigers got an insurance run on junior Asa Sparks' single in the sixth.
That policy had inadequate coverage, though, as Marshall put up a five-spot in its half of the sixth. Senior Sebastian Sims and Skinner singled to open the stanza, with a pair of errors allowing the Owls to tie the contest.
A walk and hit batter packed the bags and, with two out, senior Collin Porter and Skinner were walked and Sims plunked to force in three runs for an 11-7 Marshall lead.
Junior Zach Playle's infield single and two walks loaded the bases in the top of the seventh, bringing Porter to the mound. The southpaw got the job done. A sacrifice fly brought in Playle and a two-out walk let the go-ahead run come to the plate, but Porter struck him out to end the game and pick up a save.
Western and Pennington each had two hits to pace the Tigers (15-8, 8-4 NCMC).
Sophomore Tyler Cott scored three runs for the Owls (13-10, 7-5), who as the No. 1 seed have a first-round bye in the Class 3, District 9 Tournament at Lake Ozark. They will play in the semifinals Monday against the winner of Saturday's game between Eldon and Versailles.