STARKVILLE, Miss. - The Mississippi State men's tennis team will end its Nevada road swing Saturday, traveling to Las Vegas, Nev., to take on the University of Nevada-Las Vegas at noon C.T. at the Fertitta Tennis Complex.
State enters Saturday's contest with a 3-8 overall record this season. Earlier this week, the Bulldogs dropped a 4-3 decision to the Univeristy of Nevada in Reno, Nev. The Bulldogs are currently led by junior Ivan Bjelica who is 19-10 in singles this season. The Belgrade, Serbia native has also won three consecutive dual matches. State sophomore Ryan Farlow improved to 7-2 in dual matches this season after a win on Wednesday.
UNLV is 4-9 this season and is coming off of a 4-3 loss this past week to South Carolina. The Runnin Rebels are led by 87th-ranked Elliot Wronski and Brett Hunter. Wronski is 6-3 in dual matches this season while Hunter is 4-4.
State and UNLV have only met one previous time in the history of the two programs. That meeting came in 1990 as the Bulldogs defeated the Rebels in Starkville.
Following Saturday's action, the Bulldogs will return home next weekend to host SEC foes Kentucky and Vanderbilt.
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State (17-11) closes a nine-game road trip when they head to Knoxville, Tenn. to face top-ranked Tennessee (25-2). The teams will play a doubleheader Saturday at 12 p.m. CT at Tennessee Field, followed by a single game on Sunday at 11:30 a.m. CT. All games can be heard on MSU's radio station, WMSV 91.1 FM and can be heard live on the station's website, www.wmsv.msstate.edu.
Tennessee leads the all-time series with State, 19-10. The Lady Vols have won seven straight contests, dating back to a March 19, 2005 doubleheader sweep in Knoxville. MSU's last win in the series came on May 13, 2004 when the Bulldogs defeated UT 8-2 in the SE Tournament. MState hasn't won in Knoxville since defeating Tennessee, 11-7, March 22, 2003.
Chelsea Bramlett looks to keep her strong start to her collegiate career going. The freshman leads MSU in hitting with a .436 batting average, placing her seventh in the conference. She also leads the conference in runs (31) and hits (44), and is second in stolen bases with 26. Her 26 stolen bases currently put her third on MSU's all-time freshman list.
Kelli Miller leads the Bulldogs from the mound with a 7-5 record and a 1.38 ERA. In 61.0 innings of work, the senior has struck out 32 batters. Sara Hickerson is 2-2 with 33 strikeouts in 37 innings of work. She also has a conference-high five saves.
Tennessee will be MSU's fifth ranked opponent this season, and second ranked in the top ten. The Bulldogs beat then-10th ranked California, 9-0 on February 16 at the UNLV Louisville Slugger Leadoff Classic. MSU then fell to then-No 20 Florida State, 4-2, and No. 1 Nebraska, 7-6, at the NFCA Leadoff Classic. MSU then opened the conference season by dropping three games to No. 3 Alabama. Mississippi State is 1-2 all-time against the top-ranked team, having beaten No. 1 Arizona, 7-1, in 2001. State's last win over a ranked conference opponent was on April 24, 2005, when they knocked off No. 16 Florida, 3-0.
Tennessee enters this weekend's series ranked No. 1 in both the ESPN.com/USA Softball and USA Today/NFCA polls. The Lady Vols are currently 25-2 overall, 3-2 in the SEC. The Lady Vols opened conference play by taking two of three from No. 19 Florida. UT then split a midweek doubleheader with Ole Miss. With two outs in the top of the seventh, Shannon Doepking roped a single down the right field line, driving in the game's only run and giving Tennessee the 1-0 victory. In the second game, Ole Miss took to the lead in the first when Monica Abbot was called for back-to-back illegal pitches with runners on second and third, handing the Rebels a 2-0 lead. UM jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the sixth, off of homeruns by Lauren Grill and Alyssa McGovern. But the Lady Vols responded in the seventh. With two outs and the bases loaded, Lindsay Schutzler blasted a triple into left center, closing the gap to 5-3. Tiffany Huff then hit a single, scoring Schutzler and cutting the deficit to one. But Tonya Callahan flied out to right to end the game. Tennessee holds a 19-10 record all-time over State, including victories in the last seven games.
Following this weekend's action, the Bulldogs will travel to Birmingham, Ala. for a midweek game on Tuesday starting at 6:00 p.m.
Track & Field
ATHENS, Ga. - Mississippi State 's opening day at the 2007 Georgia Relays was highlighted by claiming the men's and women's 5000-meter run along with registering a win in the men's sprint medley relay.
In the women's 5000-meter run, State claimed the top-three spots in the event. Junior Annie Falor claimed top honors with a time of 17:19.13. Sophmores Michelle Corrigan and Nicole Rosetti finished second and third respectively in the event with times of 17: 40.75 and 18:26.73. The times recorded by Corrigan and Rosetti are personal-best marks. On the men's side, Robert Scribner won the 5000-meter run with a time of 15: 17.40.
MState's sprint medley relay team of John Bailey, Arthur Davis, Ezra Jones and Chris Woods won the men's sprint medley relay event with a time of 3: 20.76. The Maroon and White's other foursome of Kendall May, Bruce Davis, Nathan Daniels and Golden Coachman placed second in the event, recording a time of 3:24.58. In the women's sprint medley run, MState's squad of Gabrielle Dillon, Angelica Phillips, Marrissa Harris and Dot Youmans turned in a time of 4: 09.71.
"It was a tough day with the wind getting up to 20-25 miles and hour, but we dominated today in the distance races and did well in some field events," said MSU head coach Al Schmidt.
In the field events, MSU's Emily Sanders posted a throw of 156 feet, four inches in the hammer throw to place third in the event. Sophomore Janelle Finley registered a jump of 38-11 in the triple jump.
The Georgia Relays features teams from Minnesota, Clemson, Vanderbilt, Georgia Southern, Georgia State, Eastern Illinois, Kennesaw State, Mercer, Shorter, Berry, South Carolina State, Troy, Clayton State and host Georgia.
Saturday's events get underway at 10 a.m. CST with the men's javelin. Running events get started at 11:30 a.m.
BATON ROUGE, La. - Senior Amanda Mathis shot a 1-under 71 and stands in third place as she led the MSU women's golf team on the first day at the LSU/Cleveland Golf Classic on Friday. As a team, State concluded the first round in 15th place and is only seven shots from ninth place heading into Saturday's second round.
Mathis had three birdies on the opening day and fired her best round of the year. Mathis' career round also came at the LSU/Cleveland Golf Classic two years ago as she fired a 67 in the second round of that tournament. MSU sophomore Leigh Phillips fired an 80 on the first day and stands in a tie for 56th. State's Julia Huh and Gina Sharp both shot 82 on Friday and are in a tie for 74th. Freshman Suzanne Stanley rounded out MSU's scoring on the opening day with an 83.
Vanderbilt fired a 294 on the opening day and leads the team competition by four strokes over Duke and Tennessee. In the individual competition, Duke's Amanda Blumenhurst currently leads the individual competition after a round of 68 on Friday.
Saturday's second round will begin with a tee off on hole #1 and #10 at 8 a.m. CT. Sunday's final round will be a shotgun start.