Red Raiders Defeat Bulldogs 10-6

ATLANTA, Ga. - Texas Tech plated four unearned runs in the second inning Friday afternoon and went on to top Mississippi State 10-6 in the opening round of the 2004 NCAA Atlanta Regional at Georgia Tech's Russ Chandler Stadium. The loss sends Mississippi State (34-23) into an 11 a.m. (ET) elimination round Saturday game against the loser of Friday night's Georgia Tech-Jacksonville State game.

First baseman Josh Brady went 4-for-5 and drove in four runs for the Red Raiders (39-19). One of those hits was a two-run single during Tech's four-run second-inning burst. The inning opened with back-to-back fielding erors by Bulldog first baseman Brad Jones and included a run-scoring triple by Jose Delgado.

"We didn't make a couple of plays in the second inning, plays that we've got to make, and that made it very difficult on our pitcher, AJ (Alan Johnson)," said Bulldog head coach Ron Polk. "After that, for the most part, we were playing catch up. We don't fault our kids for errors. They are going to happen. But it's very difficult to beat a team like Texas Tech when you give them a four-run inning."

Tech starter Dallas Braden (6-4) registered a career-high 11 strikeouts, scattering 13 hits while walking two before leaving the game an out away from a career-first complete-game win. Relief man John Milton finished the game.

State got on the scoreboard in the third inning. Tyler Scarbrough opened with a single and Joseph Hunter drove in MSU's first run of the game with the first of his career-high matching four hits, a double to left-center.

The Red Raiders advanced their lead to 6-1 in the fourth on Brady's 20th home run of the season, a two-run shot over the center field wall.

Tech struck for three more runs and an 8-2 lead in the sixth, chasing MSU starter Alan Johnson (3-4) from the game. Johnson gave up nine runs (five earned) on nine hits with a season-high six strikeouts in 5-1/3 innings.

Mississippi State closed the gap with a ninth-inning flurry. Singles by Hunter, Jeffrey rea and Steve Gendron plated one run and Brad Corley followed with his 19th roundtripper of the year, a three-run shot to center.

But the Bulldogs were not able to overcome the early deficit and dropped the opener 10-6.

With four hits in the final frame, State MSU out-hit Tech 13-12. In addition to Hunter's four-hit performance, Jeffrey Rea and Steve Gendron collected two singles each while Corley delivered a a single and the final inning home run. With his two hits Gendron raised his career hits total to 315, eighth most in the Southeastern Conference, while Corley extended his current hitting streak to 12 games.

Sophomore Jamie Gant struck out four and allowed two hits in 1-2/3 innings of scoreless relief, while freshman Josh Johnson gave up a run in an inni first gameng of relief in the eighth.

"We've been challenged the last couple of weeks," said Polk. "It makes it tough (losing the first game), but we still have life in us, and that's all you can ask for."

The Bulldogs have tabbed senior right-hander Jeff Lacher for starting mound duty Saturday.


MSU 001 010 004 - 6-13-3
TTU 040 203 01X - 10-12-0

WP - Dallas Braden (6-4). LP - Alan Johnson (3-4). HR - Brad Corley (19), Jim Brady (22). T - 2:45. ATT - 1,540.

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