News from MSU Media Relations--Oct. 21

The latest sports news from the MSU Media Relations Department...Soccer, Baseball, Volleyball, Men's Tennis and Women's Tennis.

STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State fought valiantly Thursday night at the MSU Soccer Field, but in the end, two first-half goals were enough to propel Vanderbilt to a 2-0 win.

Mississippi State (7-11, 0-9 SEC) closes the road slate Sunday with a 1:30 p.m. CT first kick against Kentucky. The Bulldogs wrap the regular season next Friday, hosting Ole Miss at 7 p.m. in the annual battle for the Magnolia Cup.

Vanderbilt scored the winner in the 16th minute as Molly Kinsella took a pass from her sister, Megan, and fired it into the top right corner of the net from 18 yards out.

The Commodores took a 2-0 advantage to halftime as Megan Kinsella connected with Nicole Adams for a header from point-blank range.

VU out-shot the Dawgs 10-5 in the opening half, but the Bulldogs turned up the intensity in the second half and came out with 11 second-half shot attempts while playing solid defense.

"Overall, I am really proud of this team. We had the adversity of having a couple of players drop out right after kickoff, but we dug deep, especially in the second half," MSU coach Neil Macdonald said. "We really took the game to Vanderbilt in the second half, and if we convert that opportunity by Monica (Alvarado), the game could have turned very quickly."

Alvarado's 74th-minute scoring attempt came on a Bulldog corner kick. Sophomore Jasmine Simmons hit a perfectly-placed service to Alvarado, but her header was cleared from the left side of the net by a Vanderbilt defender.

Junior Kim Pettit had a follow-up attempt, but Bachtel recovered in time to stop her shot on goal.

Despite firing 22 shots, the Commodores placed just five shots on target. Sophomore goalie Skylar Rosson made three saves, giving her the ninth-most in a season with 103.

Bachtel matched her goalie counterpart with a three-save effort.

STARKVILLE, Miss. - A trio of Homecoming weekend baseball scrimmages are on tap at Dudy Noble Field in conjunction with Mississippi State's ongoing fall baseball practices.

Coach John Cohen's diamondmen are set to play scrimmage games at 3:30 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday. All games are open to the public and set to last seven to nine innings, depending on the pitch counts for the hurlers schedule to throw each game.

Fans are reminded that as part of an on-going fall resurfacing and reseating project at the stadium, all grandstand seating at Dudy Noble Field has been removed. Fans are encouraged to use the bleacher seating along the foul lines and to exercise caution around the construction areas.

MSU concludes its 6-1/2 week fall baseball practice Oct. 26-31 with the Bulldog World Series. The team rosters for the five-game series will be announced Monday night at an NFL/NBA-style draft ceremony.

STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State takes aim on its fifth win in its last six home meetings with Ole Miss when the Bulldogs (11-10, 3-7 SEC) take on the Rebels (14-5, 8-2 SEC) in a Homecoming Friday match at the Newell-Grissom Building.

First serve for the match is set for 7 p.m. and there is no charge for admission.

In conjunction with a "Pack Newell-Grissom" promotion, MSU lanyards and "True Maroon" t-shirts will be distributed to early-arriving fans, while Mississippi State's 2010 Homecoming court will be presented during the promotional intermission following the second set. MSU has twice set attendance records at the 2,000-seat Newell-Grissom Building this fall. School officials are hopeful Friday's attendance will eclipse the 1,000 mark for the first time in 14 seasons of volleyball competition at the facility located near the popular football weekend on-campus gathering point, "The Junction."

The Bulldogs stormed back from a 20-13 deficit and successfully fended off five set-point serves in the fourth set Friday night to nail down a 3-1 win over SEC West rival Alabama. Junior outside hitter Caitlin Rance tallied 17 kills and 12 digs and freshman setter Paris Perret finished with 43 assists and 15 digs to reach double-double status against the Crimson Tide. The victory gave State its first back-to-back home wins over Alabama.

Bulldog seniors Ashley Newsome and Kayla Woodard also starred for State. Newsome back a 12-kill performance with six blocks, sharing match honors at the net with Bulldog teammate Hannah Wilkinson. Woodard, now second in the SEC with 334 digs, tallied 15 digs Wednesday against Alabama. With 1,260 career digs, she needs four digs Friday to climb to fourth on MSU's career lists.

"It's re-match time against our biggest rival on our home court on Homecoming weekend," said second-year MSU volleyball head coach Jenny Hazelwood of Friday's battle with Ole Miss. "Ole Miss is a solid team all the way around and obviously is having an outstanding year. Our fans played a huge role in our success against Alabama Wednesday night, and we need them to help give us a home court advantage against an Ole Miss team that is playing with a lot of confidence right now."

In her first season as MSU head coach last fall, Hazelwood guided the Bulldogs to a sweep of the two-match series with Ole Miss. On the opening weekend of league play this fall, the Rebels claimed a closely-contested, straight-sets win (25-18, 25-17, 27-25) over the Bulldogs in Oxford.

Men's Tennis
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Last season the Mississippi State men's tennis team had an impressive showing at the ITA Southern Regional Championships. The Bulldogs hope to rekindle some of that success in this year's ITA Southern Regional Championships taking place in Tuscaloosa, Ala.

13 schools from the state of Alabama, Louisiana and Mississippi will join the Maroon and White at the championship event including Alabama, UAB, Samford, LSU, Louisiana-Lafayette, Ole Miss, Southern Miss, Auburn, South Alabama, Troy, Tulane and Jacksonville State.

Last season MSU's George Coupland was the runner-up in singles at the ITA Southern Regionals and a semifinalist in the event along with teammate Artem Ilyushin. Upon that particular success State totaled 19 singles victories and four doubles wins.

Although the fall season is early and only two tournaments have been played MSU is currently being paced by true freshman Malte Stropp in singles with a 3-2 record. Louis Cant, a junior for the Maroon and White is State's highest ranked player in singles at 38th followed by George Coupland who stands at 56th and 79th-ranked Artem Ilyushin. The tandem of Coupland and Ilyushin are ranked 11th nationally.

The Bulldogs will begin tournament play at 8:30 a.m. CT on Friday, Oct. 22 and results will be made available at,p.

Women's Tennis
STARKVILLE, Miss. - This weekend, October 22-25, the Lady Bulldog tennis squad will travel to Birmingham, Ala. to compete in the ITA Southern Regional tournament.

In their last appearance at the Southern Regionals, several Lady Bulldogs were able to notch victories in their two-day stint. Sophomore Danielle Terpko and senior Elizabeth Hall were among those with victories last year who will be travelling this weekend.

Terpko will be heading into Birmingham with momentum on her side. In the Roberta Allison Fall Classic this past September, Terpko pulled off the impressive feat of winning her overall draw.

Joining Terpko and Hall this weekend, will be juniors Mariia Ryzhova and Jordan Zachary, and true freshman Vivian Pietraroia. Ryzhova and Zachary also notched key victories at the Roberta Allison Fall Classic.

The Lady Bulldogs are slated to begin play Friday, October 22 at 8 a.m. CT.

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