Mississippi State clips Golden Eagles in midweek game; Ole Miss rolls over JSU
PEARL — Mississippi State’s walk-off streak ended, but its winning streak is alive and well.
Logan Tanner hit two RBI singles, and the Bulldogs’ pitchers amassed 20 strikeouts as they beat Southern Miss 4-1 Wednesday night in a midweek game at Trustmark Park.
Mississippi State totaled 20 strikeouts in a game for the first time in exactly 19 years. On March 3, 2002, the Diamond Dawgs struck out 20 batters against Jacksonville State in the final game of a three-game series at Dudy Noble Field.
Wednesday’s strikeout total was a Southern Miss single-game record.
“Southern Miss is going to be a Regional team and they are an in-state rival. For us to be able to put a good effort out there, we are what we showed tonight. We have that ability, we’ll play great defense (as the season goes on) and when we pitch like that, it’s really hard to score against us,” Mississippi State coach Chris Lemonis said.
Mississippi State (6-2) won its third straight game, after notching back-to-back walk-off victories over Tulane. This one never came to that thanks to a dominant pitching performance.
Houston Harding started and struck out nine batters in five innings. Preston Johnson had six strikeouts in two innings, while Cameron Tullar had two and Stone Simmons had three. They combined to allow just three hits and three walks, and a single run.
Southern Miss’ Dustin Dickerson hit an RBI single in the top of the third inning to tie the score at 1. Rowdey Jordan hit a sacrifice fly in the bottom half to put Mississippi State back in front, and then the Bulldogs scored twice in the fifth inning to extend the lead.
Tanner Allen and Logan Tanner each had an RBI single in the fifth inning.
Southern Miss starter Drew Boyd allowed four runs, three earned, on seven hits in 4 1/3 innings. The Golden Eagles’ bullpen made up for that shaky outing, however, as five relievers allowed two hits and no runs in 3 2/3 innings.
Southern Miss (4-3) lost its second game in a row. It will go on the road for a three-game weekend series against Jacksonville State beginning Friday at 6 p.m.
Mississippi State, meanwhile, will host Kent State in a hastily-arranged series beginning Friday at 6 p.m. The Bulldogs were to play Tennessee Tech, but COVID-19 issues in Tech’s program forced it to cancel the series.
Ole Miss 12, Jackson State 1
Hayden Leatherwood went 3-for-4 with a double, two RBIs and two runs scored, and Kevin Graham was 2-for-3 with three RBIs and two runs scored as Ole Miss took care of Jackson State (3-5) in a midweek game in Oxford.
Tim Elko also drove in two runs and scored a pair for Ole Miss (7-2), which took advantage of 10 walks issued by five Jackson State pitchers and scored seven runs in the first inning.
Chandler Dillard hit an RBI single in the sixth inning to bring in Jackson State’s only run.
Ole Miss will next play Belmont in a three-game series beginning Friday at 6:30 p.m. at Swayze Field. Jackson State heads to Alabama State for its second Southwestern Athletic Conference series of the season, with game one of a three-game set scheduled for Friday at 6 p.m.