LSU beats MSU, wins share of SEC title

Published 12:16 am Sunday, May 21, 2017

STARKVILLE — LSU spoiled the going-away party at Dudy Noble Field, and Mississippi State’s plans for a long weekend along with it.

Beau Joedan homered, doubled, scored two runs and drove in two, and LSU beat Mississippi State 11-7 Saturday night to finish a three-game sweep.

LSU (39-17, 21-9 Southeastern Conference) earned a share of the SEC regular-season title with Florida by sweeping its second straight conference series and winning its eighth SEC game in a row.
It’s the 17th SEC championship for LSU.

The Tigers will have a first-round bye in the SEC Tournament. They’ll play Wednesday against the winner of a first-round game between Texas A&M and Missouri.

“LSU is outstanding,” Mississippi State coach Andy Cannizaro said. “This weekend, they were better than us in every aspect of the game. We are going to focus on going to Hoover now and playing well in the SEC Tournament.”

Mississippi State (34-22, 17-13) entered the weekend with a chance at the SEC West Division title and a bye, but watched all of that slip away.

The Bulldogs have lost five consecutive conference games heading into the tournament, and will have to play in Tuesday’s single-elimination first round.

Mississippi State will face Georgia at 8 p.m. in the final game of day one. The winner will play Arkansas at 8 p.m. Wednesday as the tournament transitions into a double-elimination round.

“We had a tough weekend,” Cannizaro said. “Overall, it was a great regular season. We did better than many people thought we would do. I am very proud to be the head baseball coach here. We have the best fans in the nation and I appreciate them waiting it out with us today.”

The series finale — the last regular-season game at Dudy Noble Field before it undergoes a $55 million renovation in the offseason — was delayed three hours by rain Saturday.

When play did start, LSU pecked away at five different Mississippi State pitchers. The Tigers had a weekend-best 14 hits, scored in six different innings and stranded 16 base runners.

LSU started the scoring with four runs in the second inning. The big blow was a two-run home run by Jordan.
MSU came back with two runs in the home half of the second. After Hunter Vansau doubled and Luke

Alexander walked, Ryan Gridley brought both home with a two-run double. A strikeout ended the threat with the Bulldogs stranding a pair.

The Bulldogs pulled even an inning later. Cody Brown drew a leadoff walk and Hunter Stovall followed with his first home run of the season, a two-run shot to left field.

LSU took the lead for good in the fourth inning on an RBI single by Gregg Deichmann. The Tigers stretched the lead with another run in the fifth inning and three more in the sixth.

The Bulldogs got a couple of runs back in the bottom of the sixth.

Josh Lovelady and Alexander drew back-to-back walks to start the frame. After a strikeout, Brent Rooker hit an RBI double down the left field line that set the MSU single-season record for doubles. Jake Mangum followed with a two-run single up the middle. The Bulldogs came close to tying the contest when Cody Brown barely missed a home run to right center.

LSU then put it away with insurance runs in both the seventh and eighth innings.

Mississippi State finished with nine hits. Rooker had three, while Vansau had two.

SEC Tournament
At Hoover, Ala.
May 23
Game 1 – South Carolina vs. Vanderbilt, 9:30 a.m.
Game 2 – Missouri vs. Texas A&M, 1 p.m.
Game 3 – Ole Miss vs. Auburn, 4:30 p.m.
Game 4 – Georgia vs. Mississippi St., 8 p.m.
May 24
Game 5 – Kentucky vs. S.C.-Vandy winner, 9:30 a.m.
Game 6 – LSU vs. Missouri-Texas A&M winner, 1 p.m.
Game 7 – Florida vs. Ole Miss-Auburn winner, 4:30 p.m.
Game 8 – Arkansas vs. Georgia-MSU winner, 8 p.m.
May 25
Game 9 – Game 5 loser vs. Game 6 loser, 9:30 a.m.
Game 10 – Game 7 loser vs. game 8 loser, 1 p.m.
Game 11 – Game 5 winner vs. game 6 winner, 4:30 p.m.
Game 12 – Game 7 winner vs. game 8 winner, 8 p.m.
May 26
Game 13 – Game 9 winner vs. Game 11 loser, 3 p.m.
Game 14 – Game 10 winner vs. Game 12 loser, 6:30 p.m.
May 27
Game 15 – Game 13 winner vs. Game 11 winner, Noon
Game 16 – G14 winner vs. G12 winner, 3:30 p.m.
May 28
Championship game, 2 p.m.