State beats Georgia 4-2

ATHENS - Chad Crosswhite and John Lalor combined for 11 strikeouts and Brian LaNinfa drove in three runs to lead 13th-ranked Mississippi State to a 4-2 win over Georgia in game one of an SEC series Saturday at Foley Field.

Georgia (20-31, 8-17 SEC) began the day with a 2-0 lead as Friday's game was suspended after one inning due to rain. When play resumed Saturday, MSU (32-14, 14-9 SEC) got a run back in the second. Then in the third, MSU took a 3-2 edge on LaNinfa's two-run home run off Bulldog starter Stephen Dodson. In the fifth, Edward Easley lined a one-out double and later scored on a base hit by LaNinfa to make it 4-2. Crosswhite, like Dodson who started Friday, returned to the mound and silenced the Bulldogs until giving way to Lalor for the final four frames.

Crosswhite got the win to improve to 7-2 while Lalor notched his third save. Dodson fell to 4-5, allowing four runs on eight hits in five innings. A bright spot for Georgia was the three scoreless innings from freshman Justin Earls who recorded a career-high five strikeouts. Also, Georgia junior third baseman Ryan Peisel led off the fifth with a base hit to extend his hitting streak to 18 games.

In the bottom of the first, senior Jonathan Wyatt lined a one-out single and scored on a triple by sophomore Gordon Beckham. Freshman Rich Poythress followed with a slow-roller to third base, allowing Beckham to score for a 2-0 lead.

Game two of the series Saturday is slated to begin approximately at 5:45 p.m. The scheduled starting pitchers for game two will be Georgia sophomore left-hander Nathan Moreau (4-2, 4.75 ERA) and MSU junior left-hander Justin Pigott (4-4, 5.33 ERA).

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