Bulldogs Lose Series Finale to LSU 9-6

BATON ROUGE, La. - The LSU baseball team sent Alex Box Stadium out a winner Sunday afternoon as the Tigers knocked off Mississippi State 9-6 in Southeastern Conference baseball action.

The contest was the final regular season game played at LSU's 70-year-old home stadium. The streaking Tigers sweep the weekend series with MSU to up an overall win streak to 12 straight games and a conference win streak to nine straight games. LSU won its final eight games at Alex Box Stadium this season.

The Bulldogs grabbed an early 2-0 lead with a Ryan Duffy first-inning home run. The Tigers later broke a 3-3 tie in the fourth inning and did not trail again in the game.

LSU improved to 35-16-1 overall and 15-11-1 in conference play. The Tigers moved to two games ahead in the Western Division standings with Alabama and Ole Miss results still pending. MSU fell to 20-32 and 7-20.

In the M-State first inning, Tyler Moore laced a two-out single. Duffy then lined his sixth home run of the season - a towering shot over the right field fence. It would be the first of a career-best four-hit game for the MSU catcher.

LSU answered with its eighth home run of the weekend in the second inning when Blake Dean hit a solo home run.

The Tigers then grabbed a 3-2 lead with a pair of runs in the third inning before MSU tied the game in the fourth inning on an RBI-single by Andy Rice.

The tie was short-lived with the Tigers scoring once in the fourth inning and two more times in the fifth inning. A dropped fly ball plated one of the fifth-inning run, while an RBI-single by Micah Gibbs extended the lead to 6-3.

The teams traded runs in the sixth inning before the Bulldogs plated two scores in the seventh inning to cut the deficit to 7-6. Grant Hogue and Duffy both had doubles in that at-bat. An RBI-single by Tyler Moore scored one run while a groundball out by Nick Hardy scored the other.

LSU moved back out of danger in the home half of the seventh inning with a run scored on a wild pitch and another run scored on a D. J. LeMahieu. The Bulldogs pounded out 14 hits. MNark Goforth and Moore each had multiple hits to trail Duffy's four-hit day.

The Tigers made the most of nine hits. Dean and LeMahieu had multiple hits for LSU.

Justin Pigott (2-3) took the loss. The MSU senior left-hander worked five innings, allowing six hits and six runs (three earned), with three walks and five strikeouts. John Lalor worked 1-1/3 innings, while Aaron Weatherford worked 1-2/3 innings to complete the contest.Lalor allowed three hits and three runs (two earned), while Weatherford was hitless while striking out three.

Jared Bradford (9-4) earned the win. Bradford worked six innings, allowing 10 hits and four runs (all earned), with no walks and seven strikeouts. Louis Coleman started the seventh inning and only recorded one out, while allowing three hits. Daniel Bradshaw threw one-hit shutout relief over the final 2-2/3 innings for his fourth save.

The Bulldogs close the 2008 season and Coach Ron Polk's coaching career at MSU with a four-game homestand. MSU will host Memphis at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday and Arkansas this weekend for the final SEC series of the year. The Bulldogs and Razorbacks meet at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, 6:30 p.m. Friday and 3 p.m. Saturday. The MSU seniors will be honored before Friday's game, while Coach Polk will be honored before Saturday's regionally televised (Fox Sports Net South) game.

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