STARKVILLE, Miss. — The Mississippi State baseball team surrendered five runs in the fifth inning to No. 19 LSU and wound up dropping the series finale 13-3 Sunday at Dudy Noble Field.
With the loss, the Bulldogs fall to 18-15 (4-8 SEC), while the Tigers improve to 23-9 (7-5 SEC).
The MSU offense, which produced 10 hits, was led by graduate student RJ Yeager with a 3-for-4 day at the plate with a home run, while junior Logan Tanner was 2-for-4. LSU was led by freshman Josh Pearson with three hits, five RBIs and two runs, while graduate student Tyler McManus was 3-for-4 with three runs scored. Sophomore Dylan Crews added two hits, three RBIs and two runs and redshirt sophomore Cade Doughty added two hits, two RBIs and two runs.
Sophomore pitcher Cade Smith (4-2) started for the Bulldogs and was charged with the loss after allowing six runs on five hits with one strikeout and five walks in five innings. Sophomore Brooks Auger then allowed three runs on four hits with two strikeouts in two innings of work. Sophomore Mikey Tepper surrendered four runs on four hits with one walk in the eighth inning before senior Cam Tullar pitched a clean ninth inning with one strikeout.
Freshman pitcher Samuel Dutton started for the Tigers and allowed one run on four hits with one strikeout in three innings pitched. Freshman Grant Taylor (4-0) earned the win after tossing four innings and allowing two runs on five hits with six strikeouts. Sophomores Riley Cooper and Ty Floyd each pitched a scoreless inning to close out the game.
For the second consecutive day, Yeager hit a leadoff home run, which gave MSU a 1-0 lead after one inning of play.
After a scoreless second inning, LSU tied the game at 1-1 in the top of the third inning. Back-to-back walks issued to redshirt sophomore Brayden Jobert and McManus began the inning before freshman Josh Stevenson bunted for a single to load the bases. A double play would follow, but Jobert was able to score.
The top of the fifth inning began with a triple to left-center field by McManus before Stevenson was walked. After a lineout, Crews and sophomore Jacob Berry hit RBI singles. Three more runs came in to score on Pearson’s three-run home run to right field to give the Tigers a 6-1 lead.
McManus hit a one-out single through the right side in the top of the sixth inning and scored on sophomore Tre’ Morgan’s RBI double to right-center to push LSU’s lead to 7-1.
In the top of the seventh inning, back-to-back one-out home runs by Doughty and Pearson made it a 9-1 ballgame. In the bottom half, senior Brayland Skinner hit a pinch-hit single up the middle before freshman Slate Alford entered to pinch hit and hit his first career home run to make it 9-3.
The Tigers tacked on four more runs in the top of the eighth inning. McManus led off with a single through the right side and Stevenson was walked to put two on with no outs. After a groundout advanced both runners, Crews hit a two-RBI double up the middle. An RBI double by Doughty and an RBI single by Pearson ended the game’s scoring at 13-3.
The Bulldogs will return to the diamond Tuesday when they host UAB at 6 p.m. CT at Dudy Noble Field on SEC Network+.