Dawgs top State Saturday

STARKVILLE - Georgia junior Stephen Dodson pitched seven strong innings and Gordon Beckham and Matt Olson hit home runs to lead the Bulldogs to a 5-1 victory over Mississippi State Saturday.

Beckham snapped out of an 0-for-16 slump with a solo home run in the third to give the Bulldogs a 1-0 lead. It was Beckham's SEC-leading 14th home run of the year and fifth in league play. In the fourth, the Bulldogs extended their lead to 4-0. Olson (2-for-5, 2 RBI) led off with his fourth home run of the year and then with two outs, senior Ryan Peisel lined a two-run double to right. Olson added a two-out, run-scoring single in the fifth to make it 5-0. MSU got on the board in the bottom of the fifth.

With the win, Georgia improves to 14-10 overall and 5-3 in the SEC while MSU is now 11-4 (2-6 SEC). With two outs in the fifth, MSU got three straight singles off Dodson capped by Cody Freeman to push across a run and avoid a shutout.

"We played well today, got a great pitching performance from Stephen Dodson, and we generated some offense," said Georgia coach David Perno. "The best thing today was only three punch outs and six walks, a lot of the guys are starting to come around at the plate. We're getting closer. Our pitching has been solid."

Dodson (4-1) gave the Bulldogs seven innings, allowing just one run on eight hits with a walk and four strikeouts for his team-leading fourth win. Sophomore Justin Earls tossed two scoreless innings to secure the victory. MSU starter Lee Swindle got the loss to fall to 2-2 as he surrendered five runs on seven hits in 4.2 innings.

The rubber game of the series will begin Sunday at 1:36 p.m. ET, and it will be televised live by CSS. Georgia will start junior left-hander Nathan Moreau (1-0, 2.36 ERA) while MSU counters with junior right-hander Ricky Bowen (2-3, 8.04 ERA).

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