STARKVILLE, Miss. — The No. 5 Mississippi State baseball program opened up Super Bulldog Weekend with a 6-0 win over Alabama Friday night at Dudy Noble Field in the first game of a three-game Southeastern Conference Series against the Crimson Tide.
MSU (29-6, 8-5 SEC) scored four runs in the second inning and two in the seventh inning. Alabama (23-12, 4-9 SEC) was held to just four hits.
Sophomore Rowdey Jordan got the second inning going with a leadoff single to right field. A ground out then moved him to second before freshman Brad Cumbest’s RBI single scored him. Junior Gunner Halter singled to put runner’s on the corners. A fielder’s choice got Halter out at home, but allowed senior Jake Mangum to reach first base. With two runners on base, sophomore Jordan Westburg blasted a three-run homer to right field to give the Dawgs a 4-0 lead after two innings of baseball.
The score remained the same until the seventh inning when MSU added two more runs. Mangum led off with a single before moving to third on a ground out. Sophomore Tanner Allen then drew a walk to put runners on the corners. Senior Elijah MacNamee’s single up the middle scored Mangum while sophomore Justin Foscue’s double to left center scored the sixth and final run of the game to give the Diamond Dawgs a 6-0 win.
As a team, State outhit Alabama 13-4. Four MSU hitters turned in two-hit performances, including Allen, MacNamee, Cumbest and Halter.
Redshirt-junior southpaw Ethan Small (4-0) earned the win after tossing six scoreless innings where he allowed just three hits. Small struck out a career-high 15 batters in the win, which is also the most by a pitcher in an SEC game this season.
Senior Sam Finnerty (5-4) was charged with the Alabama loss after allowing four runs on nine hits in six innings of work. He fanned four batters.
Game two is slated for Saturday at 1 p.m. CT and will be televised by SEC Network.