News from MSU Media Relations--February 22

The lastest sports news from the MSU Media Relations Department...

STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State (8-3) scored in every inning, and the Bulldog pitching never gave Mississippi Valley State a chance, as MSU run-ruled the Devilettes (2-9), 10-2 in five innings.

Stephanie Comeaux threw four innings of hitless ball, allowing only a single walk for her second victory of the season. The senior has not allowed a hit, and just one base runner, in the last eight innings.

"That was another outstanding outing by Stephanie," said MSU head coach Jay Miller. "She threw another four innings of no-hit ball, and I thought she really handled them well."

MSU scored early and often. Chelsea Bramlett led off with a single, and quickly stole second and took third when the ball got by the shortstop. Nakita Boyce's ground out brought Bramlett home for the game's first run.

In the second, Katie Johnson singled and was sacrificed to second by Lindsey Hunley. Hayle Guess singled to left, and stole second, putting runners in scoring position with no out. After Michelle Kinney made it 2-0 on a ground out, Bramlett reached on a bunt single that brought Guess home all the way from second. MSU tacked on another run in third when Boyce tripled and scored on Bures' ground out.

MVSU ended the shutout in the fifth. With Jessie Bailey on to replace Comeaux in the circle, Natasha McFadden immediately broke up the no-hit bid on the first pitch, singling up the middle. Two batters later, Nakeyla Morange homered to right center.

But Mississippi State responded in their half of the inning. Lindsey Hunley singled and Hayle Guess walked. One out later, Chelsea Bramlett singled, loading the bases. After Nakita Boyce reached on a fielder's choice, Courtney Bures hit a bases-clearing double, ending the game.

Added Miller, "Offensively, we came out and put some runs on the board right away, which is a good sign. I thought we went out and played a good game. Overall, it was a good win for us."

Mississippi State returns to action Friday they travel to Columbus, Ga. for the NFCA Leadoff Classic. The Bulldogs take on No. 20 Florida State at 5 p.m., immediately followed by Seton Hall at 7 p.m. On Saturday, MSU faces Tennessee Tech at 1 p.m., and No. 21 Nebraska at 6 p.m. Sunday will see the beginning of bracket play. Fans can follow all the action live at

Men's Tennis
STARKVILLE, Miss. - The MSU men's tennis team dominated singles play and defeated the Louisiana Lafayette Ragin Cajuns 5-2 at the A.J. Pitts Tennis Centre Wednesday afternoon. State dropped a close doubles point before rallying to win five of six singles matches to claim the win.

To open doubles play, State's Ivan Bjelica and Philippe Frayssinoux topped ULL's Janusz Conradi and Jorge Delgado 8-2. The second match completed came on court #3 where Lafayette's Arlen Domoney and Dusan Tabak defeated MSU's Ryan Farlow and Chris Doerr to send the doubles point decision to court #2. Despite leading 7-4, State's freshman pair of Artem Kuznetsov and Pjotrs Necajevs lost two match points and five consecutive games and dropped a 9-7 decision to ULL's Piotre Banas and Shaun Ellison, giving the Ragin Cajuns the opening point.

When singles began, the momentum quickly turned in favor of the Bulldogs. State won the first set on five of six singles courts and never looked back, taking those five matches in straight sets. The first match completed was on court #5 where State's Farlow won the first set 6-3 and was tied 3-3 in the second set, when ULL's Conradi retired, evening the score at 1-1. Moments later, MSU freshman Edouard Benchetrit finished off ULL's Domoney 6-3, 6-1 on court #4 to give State the 2-1 advantage. MSU took a 3-1 lead with a win on court #2 that saw MSU's Frayssinoux top Cajun Tabak 6-3, 6-3. The clinching point came on court #6 where Doerr held off ULL's Delgado 7-5, 6-4 to give State a 4-1 advantage. State's 38th-ranked Bjelica gave MSU a 5-1 lead, winning 6-3, 6-3 on court #1 over ULL's Banas. In the final match completed, State's Necajevs rallied to win the second set, but ultimately fell 6-4, 3-6, 1-0(6) to ULL's Ellison in a third set supertiebreaker.

With the win, State moved to 3-2 on the season. The win also gave State a 17-10 advantage in the all-time series with Louisiana Lafayette. Farlow moved to 3-0 in dual match play while Benchetrit notched his first career dual match victory.

State will be back in action Sunday, traveling to Mobile, Ala., to take on 30th-ranked South Alabama. Match time is scheduled for 1 p.m.

Women's Tennis
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State's lady netters will close out home non-conference play this week hosting Louisiana-Lafayette. The match against the Ragin' Cajuns is slated for 2 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 22, at the A.J. Pitts Tennis Centre.

The Lady Bulldogs enter the week with a 2-3 record. MSU leads the series against the Ragin' Cajuns 13-1 all-time. In the last meeting, State claimed an 8-1 road win over then Southwestern Louisiana [ Feb. 14, 1997] in head coach Tracy Lane's first season at the helm.

UL-Lafayette comes into the match with a 6-0 record. UL heads to Oxford, Miss., to compete in a match against State's in-state rival Mississippi on Wednesday before heading to Starkville for Thursday's match.

" We have a big weekend coming up with two non-conference matches," said Lane. "Our goal is to head into conference play on a positive note. We need to work on winning more singles matches where players can gain confidence"

Following Thursday's match, the Lady Bulldogs travel to Birmingham, Ala., to compete versus UAB this Saturday, Feb. 24. The match against the Blazers is slated for noon.

Women's Basketball
STARKVILLE, Miss. - With the regular season rapidly coming to an end, the Mississippi State Lady Bulldogs (16-11, 6-6 SEC) travel to Tuscaloosa, Ala., Thursday evening for a 6 p.m. televised contest with the Alabama Crimson Tide (10-17, 0-12 SEC) at Coleman Coliseum. Van Chancellor and Leah Secondo will be calling the action for FSN. Fans are asked to contact their cable or satellite providers for availability information.

In Sunday's 84-86 overtime loss to archrival Mississippi, freshman forward Tysheka Grimes blocked four Ole Miss shots on Sunday to tie the freshman record for most blocks in a single game (Sharon Thompson - 1994 and Cara Stokes - 2x in 1984). Grimes is tied for third on the all-time list in the category, sharing the honor with Ann Sanders (1987), Cara Stokes (3x in 1984 and 1987), Pam Jones (1983), Sandra Butler (1983), Polly Branch (1983) and Mamie McKinney (2005). She also tied her season high with 11 rebounds against the Lady Rebels.

Freshman guard Alexis Rack collided with Ole Miss senior Armintie Price with 15:39 remaining in Sunday's game. Rack left the game to receive stitches and returned with less than eight minutes remaining. However, she only played one possession following her return. In only 23 minutes against the Lady Rebels, Rack netted her ninth consecutive double-digit scoring game with 14 points. If she reaches double figures on Thursday, she'll become the first Lady Bulldog since Tan White to have 10 straight double-digit scoring games.

As a team, MState is third overall in three-point field goal percentage defense (.293), fourth in three-point field goals made (5.70), fifth in offensive boards (15.07) and sixth in field goal percentage (.388). In league games only, State is in the top half of eight statistical categories, including being second in three-point field goal percentage (.348).

Sophomore guard Marneshia Richard is fifth in the league in steals per game (2.41), while Rack is fifth in three-point field goals made (1.89). In SEC games only, Richard is third in steals (2.58), sixth in field goal percentage (.538) and free-throw percentage (.810), seventh in assists (4.25) and ninth in scoring (14.3). Rack is second in three-point field goals made (2.58), third in free-throw percentage (.833) and seventh in three-point field goal percentage (.378).

Alabama enters Thursday night's contest seeking their first conference win of the season. At 0-12 in league play, Alabama is 10-17 overall on the year. The Crimson Tide fell to Florida on Sunday at home, 66-64. In Sunday's game against Florida, freshman center Talisha Chandler led the way for Alabama with her fourth double-double this season with 12 points and 14 rebounds. Senior guard/forward Navonda Moore added a team-high 24 points, while senior guard Kate Mastin added 10 points.

Moore leads the team in scoring, averaging 14.0 points per game. Mastin is second on the team in scoring with 12.6 points each time out. Chandler leads the Tide in rebounding, bringing down 6.9 boards per game.

Alabama won their last game on Dec. 30, 2006, 78-53, over North Dakota State. Since then, the Crimson Tide has dropped 12 straight league games. The Crimson Tide has defeated previous MSU opponents Southeastern Louisiana (60-57) and Savannah State (102-48).

MSU is 19-34 all-time on television. In MState's only other televised contests this season, the Lady Bulldogs fell to Georgia 61-74, defeated Arkansas, 80-75 and won at Florida, 79-74 on Feb. 11. State is 1-0 when playing on FSN this year (and 1-0 with Van Chancellor and Leah Secondo calling the game). All-time on FSN, MState is 9-14. State and Alabama have never faced each other in a televised contest.

Following Thursday's game, the Lady Bulldogs close out the regular season on Sunday at South Carolina. Tipoff from the Colonial Center in Columbia is set for 2 p.m. CT. The 2007 Southeastern Conference Women's Basketball Tournament is slated for March 1-4 at the Arena at Gwinnett Center in Duluth, Ga.

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