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No. 4 Mississippi State blanks No. 18 South Carolina 9-0 in series opener

Bulldogs improve to 34-10.

Austin Perryman/Mississippi State Athletics

COLUMBIA, S.C. — No. 4 Mississippi State baseball limited No. 18 South Carolina to three hits en route to a 9-0 win in Friday night’s series-opening win at Founders Park.

With the win, the Bulldogs improve to 34-10 (15-7 SEC), while the Gamecocks fall to 27-16 (11-11 SEC).

The Bulldogs rode a terrific performance from junior starting pitcher Christian MacLeod (4-3), who allowed just one hit in seven innings of work. He struck out six batters and walked two.

Junior Preston Johnson then allowed one hit in the eighth inning before sophomore KC Hunt struck out two in the ninth inning and surrendered one hit and two walks.

Offensively, sophomore Kamren James led MSU with a 3-for-4 night at the plate with four RBIs and one run. Senior Tanner Allen was also 3-for-4 and added two RBIs and two runs. Senior Rowdey Jordan finished with two hits and four runs, while freshman Lane Forsythe finished with two hits and a run.

South Carolina senior starting pitcher Brannon Jordan (4-4) was charged with the loss after allowing three runs on eight hits with four strikeouts and two walks in six innings of work.

The Bulldogs jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Jordan led off with a single to left-center field and advanced to second on a wild pitch. Allen followed with a single to center field to put runners on the corners before James’ single scored Jordan. Allen then crossed home on a double-play groundout.

After three scoreless innings, MSU added one run to its lead in the top of the fifth inning. After a flyout began the frame, Jordan doubled down the right-field line and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Allen’s RBI single up the middle made it 3-0.

In the top of the seventh inning, the Bulldogs struck for five more runs. Forsythe hit a leadoff single through the left side before Jordan was walked and Allen was hit by a pitch to load the bases. James followed with a three-RBI double down the right-field line. James came around to score on a passed ball before junior Brad Cumbest’s RBI double made it an 8-0 ballgame.

The Bulldogs scored another run in the top of the eighth inning when Jordan drew a one-out walk, advanced to second on a wild pitch and scored on Allen’s RBI single to end the game’s scoring at 9-0.

The second game of the series is set for Saturday at 3 p.m. CT and will be streaming on SEC Network+.