LSU begins conference title run against Bulldogs

No. 2 seed LSU (38-18, 18-12 SEC) opens SEC Tournament play at 10 a.m. Wednesday against No. 7 seed Mississippi State (36-20, 13-16) at Hoover Metropolitan Stadium in Hoover, Ala.

The game can be heard statewide on the LSU Sports Network (WDGL 98.1 FM in Baton Rouge). The radio broadcast and live stats are also available on the LSU Athletics web site,

The game will be televised regionally by Comcast Sports Southeast and the Jumbo Sports Network (Cable Ch. 13 in Baton Rouge).

LSU won its sixth straight SEC series last weekend, capturing two of three games at Mississippi State to capture the Western Division title. The Tigers won 13 of their final 17 conference games to claim the 13th division championship – the fourth this decade --  in school history.

LSU was in sixth place in the Western Division on April 15 with a 5-8 league record, but posted a 13-4 mark the rest of the way to finish at the top of the division standings with an 18-12 record.

LSU coach Smoke Laval said senior left-hander Lane Mestepey (6-7, 4.71 ERA) will start Friday's series opener for LSU. Mestepey is 2-0 in five previous appearances (three starts) against Mississippi State. In 26 career innings against the Bulldogs, Mestepey has allowed eight runs on 26 hits with one walk and 17 strikeouts.

Mestepey pitched in LSU's 7-5 victory over the Bulldogs last Friday, allowing four runs on six hits in 5.2 innings with one walk and one strikeout. He was not involved in the decision, as the Tigers posted a three-run, eighth-inning rally to secure the win.

MSU coach Ron Polk is expected to counter Wednesday with senior right-hander Alan Johnson (3-6, 4.54 ERA).

LSU shortstop Derek Hebert produced the game-winning hit in both of the Tigers' victories at Mississippi State last weekend. Hebert's two-out, two-run single in the eighth inning Friday erased a 5-4 deficit and led to LSU's 7-5 win. Hebert's solo homer in the sixth inning Sunday broke and 2-2 tie and proved to be the difference in the Tigers' 3-2 victory that clinched the division championship. Hebert batted .400 (6-for-15) in four games last week with one triple, one homer, four RBI and five runs.

LSU left-handed relief ace Jason Determann was named SEC Pitcher of the Week Monday as he earned a win and a save last weekend at Mississippi State. He appeared in a total of three games last week, posting a 1.17 ERA in 7.2 innings as he allowed one run on eight hits with three walks and nine strikeouts.

Determann worked six innings in the Mississippi State series, limiting the Bulldogs to one run on seven hits with one walk and six strikeouts. He earned a relief win in Friday's win at MSU, allowing one run on five hits in 3.1 innings with one walk and two strikeouts.

After throwing 47 pitches on Friday, Determann returned to the mound on Sunday to register his seventh save of the season. He pitched the final 2.2 innings, allowing no runs on two hits with no walks and four strikeouts. Determann fanned the final two MSU batters with runners at second and first and one out with LSU clinging to a 3-2 lead.

For the entire season, Determann is 4-0 in 23 relief appearances with a 1.80 ERA and seven saves – in 50 innings, he has recorded eight walks and 59 strikeouts and opponents are batting just .238 against him.

Mississippi State leads the all-time series with LSU, 189-156-1. LSU holds a 11-9 advantage over MSU in the 20 meetings this decade. The Tigers have won seven of the last ninemeetings between the clubs.

LSU has a 49-30 all-time record in the SEC Tournament, and the Tigers captured tournament titles in 1986, 1990, 1992, 1993, 1994 and 2000. LSU has played in the SEC Tournament championship game in three of the past five seasons (2000, 2001 and 2003).


Mississippi State Bulldogs (36-20, 13-16) vs. #6 LSU Fighting Tigers (38-18, 18-12)

DATE/TIME:  Wednesday, May 25 – 10 a.m. CDT

STADIUM:  Hoover Metropolitan Stadium in Hoover, Ala.

RANKINGS: LSU (# 6 ESPN/Sports Weekly, # 9 Baseball America, # 11 Collegiate Baseball)

                     Mississippi State (unranked)

RADIO:  statewide on LSU Sports Network (WDGL 98.1 FM in Baton Rouge) 

INTERNET:  radio broadcast and live stats of all three games at

TV:  Comcast Sports Southeast (Cable Ch. 13 in Baton Rouge)


LSU -- Sr. LHP Lane Mestepey (6-7, 4.71 ERA, 91.2 IP, 22 BB, 47 SO)

MSU – Sr. RHP Alan Johnson (3-6, 4.54 ERA, 75.1 IP, 30 BB, 57 SO)

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