Although his team defeated Oak Grove 6-4, Riley didn't have his normal game, giving up 4 runs (all earned) on 7 hits and 3 walks while striking out 4 in 5 innings of work.
"I got my fastball up," said Riley. "My curveball was working alright but they got on my changeup. They hit that pretty well and I couldn't command my slider. And that is my out pitch this year. But I tip my hat to them. They have some good hitters that you have to tip your hat to."
While his pitching wasn't up to standard for him, his hitting was during the game. He was 2-for-4 with a double.
"I hit the ball well," said Riley. "I saw it well. I knew I was going to get a heavy dose of curveballs. The ones that I did hit were fastballs but, for the most part, I got mostly curveballs."
This season Riley is hitting .436 with 14 doubles, 1 triple and 11 home runs while knocking in 31 RBI. Last season, in 13 more at-bats, he hit 4 less doubles and 2 less home runs. Riley explained why he feels he has hit with more power this season.
"I lost 30 pounds during the summer, right before school started," said Riley. "(Keegan James, Brant Blaylock and I) went to a trainer in Collierville and got bigger, stronger and faster. I got a little more flexible and I feel a lot better."
During the game, Riley was watched by Mississippi State head coach John Cohen, assistant coach Nick Mingione and two MSU class of 2015 signees, Jackson Prep baseball players Jake Mangum and Noah Hughes. Those four being at the game didn't surprise Riley.
"That's the Bulldogs; they love us all and want us there," said Riley. "And when we get there we are going to get back to the College World Series."
And MSU fans hope he winds up being a Bulldog next season. The only thing that could prevent that from happening is being drafted in the upcoming Major League Baseball draft and then being offered enough bonus money to go pro. But that is not really on Riley's mind at the moment.
"I don't really know anything about that," said Riley. "I leave all of that up to my advisor and my dad. I just try to let them take care of that. I just focus in on baseball I'm trying to finish out my season by winning a state championship."
And he and his teammates are one win away from doing that.
Gene Swindoll is the publisher of the GenesPage.com website, the source for Mississippi State sports on Scout.com sports network. You can contact him by emailing email@example.com.