|Tuesday Baseball RESULTS
|Middle Tennessee 7, Tennessee 6
|Arkansas 6, Missouri State 3
|LSU 7, McNeese State 3
|SE Missouri State 9, Mizzou 7
|Texas A&M 6, Grambling 2
Middle Tennessee Fends Off Tennessee 7-6
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - Trent Miller and Jake Ellison each hit two home runs for MTSU on Tuesday as it fought off a two-out rally by Tennessee in the bottom of the ninth to hold on for a 7-6 win at Lindsey Nelson Stadium.
The Volunteers put two on with two outs in the bottom of the ninth, but a line drive to center brought the game to a close. The game was Tennessee's 16th one-run contest of the season, a total which leads all SEC teams. UT is 6-10 in those contests.
"It's very tough to take, all the one-run losses," UT head coach Dave Serrano said. "We were talking about that as a coaching staff yesterday and if we flip that around and we're having a decent season, but the reality is we've lost more than we've won in one-run games. Today, I'm not too ashamed to say it, it's about the pitching tonight. The difference in the game tonight was their pitchers were able to execute off-speed pitches behind in the count and early in the count for strikes and we didn't.
"They were able to take a pitch out of the equation and those guys swing the bat hard. We knew that last week and they swung the bat hard and aggressively. A lot of times, I favor playing those kinds of teams if you're able to pitch. They hit a couple good pitches out but most of them were up in the zone and they're swinging hard, and those are the balls that are going to go over the fence."
A.J. Simcox led a 10-hit UT attack, going 3-for-4 with an RBI. Vincent Jackson and Will Maddox also had two hits in the contest, with Maddox driving in a run and stealing two bases.
Eric Martin had one of his best efforts on the mound this season, striking out three in two shutout innings of relief. Andy Cox also posted 1.1 scoreless frames while Trevor Bettencourt fired a perfect ninth.
After a two-run home run by Miller in the top of the first put the Big Orange in an early 2-0 hole, the Vols cut the deficit in half when Maddox broke from third on a 2-1 pitch to Ethan Bennett and slid in safely when the offering missed wide of the plate.
It marked the third time a Vol has stolen home this season and the second time for Maddox, who also did it against Western Kentucky on March 13. Jeff Moberg accomplished the feat in the Hokie-Smokey Classic against Virginia Tech on April 16.
"Will did that on his own," Serrano said. "Coach Bergeron likes to steal home, but he admitted that that wasn't his idea, that was Will. I think that's the first time I've ever seen a guy out of the stretch, looking right at the runner and the guy running right in his face, and it worked out well for us.
"Will, at times, plays the game extremely hard and sometimes he does some things that we scratch our heads about but you live and die by a guy like that and in retrospect, I'd like to have more pitchers that play the game like that, with some reckless abandon and getting after it. Will plays the game right and he's a treat to be around each and every day."
The Blue Raiders pushed their lead to 3-1 with another longball, this one by Ellison in the top of the third but the Vols came roaring back, taking a 5-3 lead with a four-run fourth.
After a single and a walk put Jackson on second and Christin Stewart on first with one out, the Orange and White called for a double steal. The throw from the MTSU catcher sailed into left, allowing Jackson to score UT's second run on the day. Pierce Bily then tied the game with a chopper to third.
Derek Lance followed with a single up the middle to put two on for Maddox who gave Tennessee its first lead of the game with a bad-hop single over the second baseman's head. Simcox then laid down a successful safety squeeze to make it a 5-3 UT lead through four innings.
The Blue Raiders weren't going to go away that easily though as both Miller and Ellison went deep again and HANK LaRue added an RBI single to push their team back in front, 7-5, at the seventh-inning stretch.
Tennessee inched within a run in the bottom of the eighth as Jackson dumped a 3-2 pitch into the corner in left for a leadoff triple before a groundout to short by Taylor Smart brought him in to make it a 7-6 ball game.
That would be as close as they would get though as MTSU reliever Jordan Cooper left runners stranded on first and second in the bottom of the ninth to close out the game and earn his first save of the year.
Tennessee will look to get back into the win column this weekend when it hosts border-rival Georgia, May 3-5.
Razorbacks Dismiss Missouri State in Non-Conference Finale
FAYETTEVILLE – The No. 14 Arkansas baseball team concluded nonconference play on Tuesday night at Baum Stadium with a 6-3 win over Missouri State.
The win was the 30th of the season for the Razorbacks, as they extend their winning streak to five games. Arkansas improves to 30-15 with Missouri State dropping to 27-13 (11-5 MVC).
Dominic Ficociello led the Razorbacks at the plate with his third three-hit game of the season. Jordan Farris also added two hits with a double and a single, and Jacob Mahan had a game-high two RBI. Arkansas got balanced contributions from throughout their lineup, as every starter reached base for the Razorbacks.
The Razorbacks showcased the depth of their pitching staff on Tuesday night as eight different pitchers toed the rubber in the game. Randall Fant started on the mound and got the win to improve to 4-1. Fant allowed a run on two hits in two innings of work. Fant, Trey Killian, Michael Gunn, Chris Oliver, Brandon Moore, Trent Daniel, Jalen Beeks, and Colby Suggs all combined to hold the Bears to just three runs on five hits. Killian, Gunn, Moore, Daniel, and Suggs all held Missouri State off the board in their relief appearances, with Killian, Gunn and Daniel each recording two strikeouts. Suggs recorded the final out of the contest to earn his eighth save of the season.
Missouri State starter Matt Hall (4-2) took the loss after giving up four runs on four hits in four innings.
Spencer Johnson had two hits, including a homer, to lead the Bears at the plate. Eric Cheray, Tate Matheny and Travis McComack each had one hit.
The Bears scored first in the game, tallying a run in the top of the first inning. Matheny led off the game with a double to left field. Cheray followed by laying down a sacrifice bunt, and a throwing error by Arkansas third baseman Brian Anderson gave Missouri State an early 1-0 advantage.
In the second inning, a rally gave the Razorbacks a lead they would never relinquish. Anderson led off the inning with a walk, and Ficociello followed with a single. Farris laid down a perfect bunt for a hit that loaded the bases with no outs. Jake Wise and Jacob Mahan each followed with RBI walks, giving the Razorbacks the lead at 2-1. Joe Serrano followed with a sacrifice fly to center, giving the Razorbacks a three run second inning and putting them ahead for good.
In the fourth, Arkansas got the leadoff man on for the third consecutive inning, and again made it work to their advantage. Farris led off the inning by lining a double down the third base line, and a two-out single by shortstop Brett McAfee scored the Razorbacks’ fourth run of the day.
In the sixth, Missouri State got a run back without the benefit of a hit. Cheray reached on a walk, and a wild pitch advanced him to second. The runner then moved to third on a groundout and scored on a sacrifice fly by Luke Voit, cutting the Arkansas lead to 4-2.
Arkansas got that run back in the bottom half of the inning. Ficociello led off with a single, and was moved into scoring position on a sacrifice bunt. Ficociello then stole third for his second stolen base of the year, and scored on an RBI groundout by Farris.
In the seventh inning, Arkansas again added to the lead. Serrano lead off the inning by drawing a walk. Arkansas put on a hit and run, and Vinson knocked a single into right field to put runners on the corners. After a wild pitch moved Vinson to second, Tyler Spoon followed with a sacrifice fly, recording his team leading 39th RBI and extending the Arkansas lead to four.
In the ninth, Missouri State was down to their final out, but Johnson hit a home run over the left field wall, scoring the third Bears’ run of the night. Missouri State tried to build a late rally to try and get the tying run to the plate, but Arkansas brought in their closer and Suggs slammed the door with a strikeout for his eighth save of the year. Suggs recorded his fourth consecutive save in his past four appearances, closing out the Razorback victory.
The Razorbacks are back on the road this weekend, traveling to Lexington, Ky. for a SEC series at Kentucky. Game one will be Friday at 5:30 p.m. CST, followed by games Saturday at 6:00 p.m. and Sunday at 12:00 p.m.
LSU Notches 40th Win of the Season
BATON ROUGE, La. -- No. 3 LSU (40-6, 16-4 SEC) put together a four-run sixth inning Tuesday night to defeat McNeese State (20-22) by a score of 7-3 at Alex Box Stadium.
The victory improved LSU’s win streak over in-state opponents to 26 games. The Tigers have also won 33 straight mid-week games, dating back to April 12, 2011, when LSU dropped a 5-2 decision to Northwestern State.
LSU returns to The Box on Thursday for the start of a three-game SEC series against No. 19 Florida (25-20, 12-9 SEC). First pitch for Thursday’s game is set for 6:30 p.m. on ESPNU and the LSU Sports Radio Network.
“I’m very pleased with the way our players approached this game,” said LSU coach Paul Mainieri. “We had a lot of really good swings, and I thought we threw the ball well on the mound. The kids came out focused tonight and ready to play, and I think that was demonstrated in the way they performed. I congratulated them after the game on earning their 40th win of the season. Anytime you can get 40 wins before you have 10 losses, you’re having a pretty significant season.”
Right-hander Hunter Newman (1-0) picked up the first victory of his collegiate career Tuesday night. The freshman fired a season-high three innings in his first career start, allowed two hits and no runs and struck out one.
McNeese’s Trey McGee (2-5) was charged with the loss after allowing three runs (all earned) on nine hits in four innings of work.
Third baseman Christian Ibarra and second baseman JaCoby Jones paced LSU with three hits apiece as the Tigers offense exploded for 15 base knocks.
The Tigers grabbed the 1-0 lead in the bottom half of the opening frame. Centerfielder Mark Laird knocked a one-out single up the middle, stole second and scored on first baseman Mason Katz’s RBI single.
Ibarra added to LSU’s lead in the bottom half of the second with a solo shot to left, which was his fifth home run of the season.
LSU chased McGee and added a third run in the bottom of the fifth. The left-hander was pulled in favor of Steven O’Bryant following a leadoff double by Laird, his second hit of the game. After moving to third on Katz’s single to left, Laird scored on left fielder Raph Rhymes’s sacrifice fly.
The Tigers broke the game open in the bottom of the sixth inning. LSU started off with four singles off the bats of Ibarra, catcher Ty Ross, Jones and pinch hitter Tyler Moore. With the bases loaded and nobody out, designated hitter Sean McMullen walked in the fifth run, which chased O’Bryant.
Right-hander Tyler Park forced Laird into a fielder’s choice, scoring Jones from third. With men on the corner and one out, shortstop Alex Bregman knocked an opposite field single to score pinch runner Andrew Stevenson and the fourth run of the inning.
McNeese took advantage of a pair of LSU errors to score two unearned runs in the top of the seventh off of right-hander Mitch Sewald.
LSU right-hander Will LaMarche was impressive in his two innings of work. The junior struck out three and allowed one hit during the fourth and fifth frames. Right-hander Nate Fury pitched a perfect sixth and was followed by Sewald, Nick Rumbelow, Butler and Kevin Berry.
Redhawks Knock Off Mizzou 9-7
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Dillon Everett launched his first career home run, a solo shot that cleared the wall in left in a losing effort as Mizzou (15-25) fell to Southeast Missouri State (21-25) by a 9-7 final Tuesday (April 30) night at Taylor Stadium. Shane Segovia also had a big day at the dish, going 2-for-4 with two RBI and a run scored. Right fielder Dane Opel also had two RBI in the contest, a two-out flare to left in the eighth inning to knot the game at seven before the Redhawks scored two runs in the ninth to take the contest.
Freshman Breckin Williams took the loss for the Tigers, giving up two runs in the game's final frame. Alec Rash started the game on the mound for Mizzou, giving up three earned runs in four innings before being relieved by Eric Anderson. Left fielder Case Munson suffered shoulder injury in the first inning, ending his game before the first out.
The Redhawks tallied two quick runs off Rash, taking advantage of an injury to Munson as he tried to make a diving catch and allowed the ball to roll to the wall, giving Derek Gibson a two-run inside-the-park home run before the game's first out. The freshman hurler righted the ship in the second, working around a leadoff double to hold SEMO off the board. Mizzou got leadoff walks in the bottom of the frame from Keaton Steele and Dylan Kelly, and Segovia's two-out single to left brought home Steele to cut the deficit to 2-1.
Another leadoff double started the third for the Redhawks in a scoreless frame. In the bottom half, Everett dropped a bunt single in the bottom of the frame, the only batter to reach for the Tigers. Anderson entered in relief of Rash in the fourth after a leadoff walk, and a double by Clayton Evans pushed the Redhawks to a 3-1 lead. Mizzou loaded the bases with walks to start off the fourth, and Segovia's double-play brought in Kelly from third to cut the deficit to 3-2. Kendall Keeton's infield single scored Jake Ivory from third, tying the game at three at the end of the fourth.
Everett led off the bottom of the fifth with a solo shot that snuck over the wall in left-center, and Mizzou struck again as Segovia wore a fastball with the bases loaded and two outs, taking a 5-3 lead in the bottom of the fifth. The Redhawks answered quickly, adding a run in the sixth on a RBI-single against John Miles, who took over for Anderson with one out, to cut the lead to 5-4. A two-out double for Jason Blum then gave SEMO the lead again, 6-5 after six.
An error from Everett came back to hurt the Tigers in the seventh, as a batter who reached on a botched grounder came around to score to add on to the Redhawk lead, making it 7-5 before Williams entered to close out the seventh. The Tigers tied the game at seven in the bottom of the eighth as Opel sent a RBI-single to left to bring home Segovia and Pearson. Matt Tellor broke the tie in the top of the ninth, leading the inning off with a homer to right, taking an 8-7 advantage. Clayton Evans's two-out single extending the lead to 9-7 before the end of the inning.
The Tigers now head to College Station, Tex., to take on the Aggies. For all the latest on Mizzou baseball, follow the team on Twitter (@MUTigerBaseball) or check in to MUTigers.com.
A&M Picks Up 6-2 Win Over Grambling
COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The Texas A&M Aggies started a key eight-game homestand with a 6-2 win over the Grambling State Tigers Tuesday evening on Olsen Field at Blue Bell Park.
Blake Allemand and Hunter Melton led the Aggie arsenal at the plate, combining for seven hits. Allemand went 4-for-5 with two doubles, two runs, a steal of home and one RBI. Melton went 3-for-4 with one home run.
Daniel Mengden also recorded multiple hits in the game, going 2-for-3 with one double and one run scored. Mikey Reynolds went 1-for-4 with one walk and one double. He extended his streak for consecutive games reaching base (via hit, walk or hit-by-pitch) to 43 games, the longest active streak in the nation.
The Tigers pounced on the Aggies in the second inning for the early lead. Elias Todman laced a double down the rightfield line to start the inning and moved to third when Aggie starting pitcher Rafael Pineda threw a pickoff attempt into centerfield. Brandon Kiser hit a slow grounder to first base to plate Todman for the 1-0 lead.
Texas A&M (23-22) stranded runners in each of the first three innings, but were finally able to take the lead with a three-run fifth inning. Mengden hit a leadoff single to centerfield and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Krey Bratsen, his 16th of the season. After Jace Statum flew out to leftfield, Reynolds drew a four-pitch walk to put two runners on. Allemand bounced a single up the middle to plate Mengden with the tying run. A&M staked claim to its first lead of the game when Cole Lankford singled through the left side of the infield to score Reynolds for the 2-1 advantage.
With runners at the corners and two outs in the bottom of the fifth, Lankford broke for second base to draw the throw. When Grambling catcher Jose Longoria took the bait, Allemand rumbled for home. Grambling second baseman Todman fumbled the offering from Longoria and was unable to send a throw back home, giving Allemand the stolen base and increasing the Aggie lead to 3-1.
Melton launched a first-pitch offering over the leftfield fence for a solo home run in the sixth inning to give the Aggies a 4-1 lead.
The Aggies tacked on two more runs in the seventh inning for a 6-1 margin. With one out, Allemand doubled down the leftfield line and scored on an error by the Grambling first baseman Kiser who was unable to hold on to a throw from Todman on a grounder to second base by Lankford. Lankford moved to third on a wild pitch and scored when Tiger relief pitcher Cory Jordan was unable to corral a slow roller back to the mound from Mitchell Nau.
Grambling State (16-27) cut the Aggie edge to 6-2 in the top of the eighth. A&M reliever Kyle Martin hit Edwin Drexler with a pitch to start the inning. Drexler stole second base and scored when Longoria deposited a single down the rightfield line.
Pineda (4-4) picked up the win for Texas A&M. He allowed one unearned run on five hits and one walk while striking out five over 6.0 innings. AJ Minter worked a scoreless seventh inning, allowing one hit while striking out one. Andrew Vinson blanked the Tigers in the ninth inning, striking out two of the four batters he faced and allowing one hit.
Brock Baker (2-5) was saddled with the loss for Grambling State. He allowed three runs on six hits and one walk over 5.0 innings.
Despite four errors in the game, the Aggies put forth a solid effort on defense with Troy Stein and Melton each making diving catches on popped up bunts, Stein’s resulting in a double play.
The Aggies return to action on Friday when they start a three-game SEC series with the Missouri Tigers. First pitches are slated for 6:35 pm on Friday, 2:05 pm on Saturday and 1:05 pm on Sunday.