MSU softball team upsets number 4 LSU, 8-7

BATON ROUGE, La. - Mississippi State (19-13, 2-3 SEC) scored two runs in the top of the 11th inning, then used clutch defense to hold back a rally by 4th-ranked LSU (20-6, 5-2) in the bottom of the frame and post an 8-7 upset of the host Tigers Tuesday evening in Baton Rouge, La.

Five different players recorded two hits apiece for the Bulldogs with Pascagoula native Tyeah Patterson plating three RBIs on a 2-for-3 night, including a two-run home run (first career HR) in the sixth. Iyhia McMichael collected two RBIs and scored a pair of runs on a 2-for-6 showing at the plate. Centerfielder Trena Peel paced the Tigers on a 3-for-6 night with an RBI and a run scored.

Reliever Kellie Wilkerson (4-0) struck out five and allowed a pair of earned runs to record the victory, with Kasey Whitehead recording just her second career save after working two-hit ball in the 11th inning. LSU starter Kristen Schmidt (7-3) struck out 14 batters, but allowed eight runs on 12 hits to saddle the loss for the Tigers.

The win effectively put an end to LSU's 17-game winning streak over the Bulldogs and marked the most hits (12) and most runs (8) for Mississippi State in the 25-game series history. The victory was State's first in Baton Rouge and the first against LSU since the 1998 season. The win also marked State's fourth against a top 10 opponent this season.

LSU got RBI singles in each of the first three innings to take a 3-0 lead into the fourth. Mississippi State tied the score by plating three runs on a two-out rally in the sixth, but LSU took advantage of Wilkerson's control problems in the bottom of the frame to score a pair of runs and take a 5-3 lead into the seventh. Schmidt looked to have the game wrapped up after retiring the first two batters in the top of the seventh, but State loaded the bases with its next three at-bats, then got successive RBI singles from Jennifer Nelson and McMichael to send the game into extra innings.

McMichael scored on a wild pitch in the tenth to give the Bulldogs their first lead of the ballgame, but LSU knotted the score back up in the bottom f the inning on Julie Wiese's RBI single to rightfield.

Earlier in the day, LSU opened up a 7-0 lead through two innings, then held back a late charge by visiting Mississippi State to defeat the Bulldogs, 9-3, in the opener of the doubleheader at Tiger Park.

Lindsay Nelson collected a pair of RBIs on a 2-for-3 hitting performance, with Wilkerson (2-for-3) adding a run scored on State's only other multi-hit showing. Blaire Brown collected an RBI on a 1-for-4 day at the plate. First baseman Christy Connor plated three runs on a 2-for-4 day to pace the Tigers.

Mississippi State starter Kasey Whitehead (10-8) allowed 10 hits and walked five batters in six innings of work to saddle the loss for the Bulldogs. Britni Sneed (10-4), the 2001 SEC Player of the Year, scattered eight hits and struck out 14 Bulldogs to grab the victory for LSU.

LSU sent 16 batters to the plate in the first two innings, plating seven runs on the shoulders of a pair of walks, seven singles and a home run to straightaway center. The Tigers plated four runs on six hits in the first inning, then pushed its lead to 7-0 on Connor's three-run blast in the bottom of the second. LSU extended its lead out to 8-0 on a wild pitch in the third before State answered with three runs of its own.

Lindsay Nelson's fourth-inning RBI double brought in McMichael with State's first run of the ballgame, before the Bulldogs inched closer with two more runs in the fifth on RBI singles by Brown and another by Nelson. Megann Steege's RBI single in the bottom of the inning brought home Trena Peel with an insurance run for the hosts.

Mississippi State will return to action Wednesday afternoon when the Bulldogs close out their three-game series with LSU in a single game at Tiger Park.

GAME 1 - #4 LSU 9, Mississippi State 3
Mississippi State 000 120 0 - 3 8 3
LSU 431 010 x - 9 10 0
Whitehead and Brown; Sneed and Reeves.W - Sneed (10-4). L - Whitehead (10-8). Save - None. HR : -LSU - Connor. 3B: Wilkerson. 2B: MSU: Wilkerson, L. Nelson. Time - 2:01. Att. - 337.

GAME 2 - Mississippi State 8, #4 LSU 7 (11 Innings)
Mississippi State 000 003 200 12 - 8 12 1
LSU 111 002 000 11 - 7 11 3
Massey, Wilkerson (6), Whitehead (11) and Waterman; Schmidt and Reeves. W - Wilkerson (4-0). L - Schmidt (7-3). Save - Whitehead (1). 2B: MSU - Best; LSU - Connor 2. 3B: LSU - Peel. HR: MSU - Patterson.

Gene's Page Top Stories