OXFORD, Miss. - Freshman Perry Katherine Furr fired a career-best 73 to lead Mississippi State's women's golf team to a tie for its lowest single-round total this season at 299 at the Rebel Intercollegiate. MSU now stands seventh overall at 47-over-par while Furr holds onto a tie for 37th place individually.
Sophomore Mallory Batson recorded her best second-round total of this season with a 74 and currently leads the Lady Bulldogs at 8-over-par and tied for 13th. Sophomore Erika Thornton rebounded from an 81-stroke performance yesterday with today's score of 74 and is tied for 21st overall. Juniors Gina Sharp and Leigh Phillips round out State golfers with two-round totals of 162 and 164, repsectively.
"I'm very proud of the way the team performed today," MSU coach Christi Sanders said. "We dug ourselves into a deep hole early in yesterday's round, so we knew we had to get off to a better start today. We did that and played consitently throughout the round. This is something we've been trying to do all year."
Tulane continues to lead heading into round two with a team total of 595 while Oregon State jumped two spots and now stands second and 13 strokes behind the Green Wave. Missouri also improved by two and heads into tomorrow's final round at third, tournament host Ole Miss holds onto fourth and Southern Miss fell to fifth place in today's round. Individually, Ole Miss' Dori Carter recorded two consecutive scores of 73 in the first two rounds to carry a two-stroke lead into the final round.
MSU will begin the final round of the Rebel Intercollegiate at 8:00 a.m. CT Sunday.
GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Mississippi State's upset bid of top-ranked Florida came up just short as Kelsey Bruder's two-out grand slam rallied the Gators to a 6-2 win and a sweep of a Saturday afternoon doubleheader in Gainesville. UF claimed an 11-2, five-inning win in the opener.
Bulldog freshman Ka'ili Smith went 3-for-3 in the second game of the twin bill to finish the afternoon 4-for-7 with two doubles, an RBI and a run scored. Sophomore Ali Bainbridge paced State in Saturday's series opener, going 2-for-3.
"Ka'ili had a great day for us," MSU head coach Jay Miller said. "She picked up hits in both games, and I thought she looked very good at the plate."
State falls to 17-19 overall and 2-12 in SEC play, while the Gators improve to 38-3, 17-1 in the league.
The Gators jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second inning of the day's second game, but the Bulldogs rallied with a pair of runs in the top of the third.
Laurie Siebert, making her first career start, led off the inning with a walk. Following a strikeout, Chelsea Bramlett reached on a bunt back to the circle that UF starter Stephanie Brombacher threw away, allowing pinch-runner Allie Heon to advance to third. Bramlett got caught in a rundown trying to steal second, but the throw to second sailed into the outfield, allowing Heon to score and put State up 1-0. Freshman Ka'ili Smith gave the Bulldogs the lead as her two-out base hit scored Bramlett after she moved to third on a Brittany Bell ground-out.
Dunlap threw an outstanding game for the Bulldogs, keeping UF off the scoreboard until the decisive seventh. With one out in the inning, Kristina Hilberth and Aja Paculba hit collective singles and Tiffany DeFelice reached on a fielder's choice to load the bases. An Ali Gardiner base hit to left-center scored Hilberth to tie the game at 2-2.
State intentionally walked Francesca Enea to load the bases, but Bruder capped a 2-for-3, four-RBI outing with the walk-off grand slam over the wall in right field.
Despite a tremendous effort in which she threw 158 pitches. The Hueytown, Ala., native fell to 9-11 on the year as she surrendered six runs on seven hits with five strikeouts and five walks in the complete-game effort.
"Lindsey pitched a great game. We had the lead going into the seventh, but we just couldn't finish it off today. She gave us a lead which is what you want," Miller said. "Give a lot of credit to Florida for the way they fought back. That is why they are the No. 1 team in the country."
Nelson picked up her second victory of the day, tossing two perfect innings of relief with four strikeouts to move to 22-3 on the year. Brombacher went the opening five frames, giving up two runs (one earned) on three hits with seven strikeouts and a walk.
In the day's opening game, Nelson held the Bulldogs to two runs on five hits with 10 strikeouts in the 11-2 decision.
After taking a 1-0 lead in the first, Florida did all its damage in the second as it scored eight runs with two outs. Megan Bush, who went 3-for-3 with three RBI, led off the inning with a base hit and later capped it with a three-run home run, her 10th of the season. Corrie Brooks also added a two-run base hit in the frame as Florida pounded-out 13 hits in the contest.
After giving up two more runs in the third on a Gardiner base hit, State got on the scoreboard with a pair of runs in the top of the fourth. Smith doubled to lead-off the inning, and she scored as Sammie Jo Bailey hit a bouncer over the third baseman's head that landed just inside the third-base line.
Junior Jessie Bailey also added a hit for the Bulldogs. Fellow junior Chelsea Bramlett was held hitless for just the fourth time this season, snapping a 10-game hit streak.
Senior Kelsey Nurnberg suffered the game-one loss to fall to 8-6 on the year. She surrendered the 11 runs, just four earned, with a strikeout and walk in the complete-game effort.
The Bulldogs and Gators close out the series on Sunday in a game set for a 12 p.m. CDT first pitch. Sunday's contest will be broadcast live on WMSV 91.1 FM and online at www.wmsv.msstate.edu.
Track & Field
AUSTIN, Texas - Mississippi State track and field teams have a phenomenal day at the Texas Relays finale. Both the Bulldogs and Lady Bulldogs concluded their stay in Austin on a high note.
"We had a great meet today," coach Al Schmidt said. "We ran exceptionally well on both sides. It is still the beginning of the season, and I think this weekend told us where we stand as a team and that there is still more work for us to do." The men's team led the way with freshman D'Angelo Cherry winning the 100-meter dash. Cherry ran a MSU fifth all-time and regionally qualifying 10.17 seconds to take the crown.
"D'Angelo (Cherry) opened a lot of eyes in the world of track and field today," Schmidt said. "He's only a freshman and is already a superstar battling to be the fastest man in the SEC."
The 4x200-meter relay team ran 1 minute, 23.28 seconds to finish third in the event final. The team of Cherry, Dwight Mullings, John Bailey and Justin Christian also ran 39.52 seconds in the 4x100-meter final to finish in fifth place.
For the Lady Bulldogs, Priscilla Gaines, Wendy Copeland, LaQuinta Aaron and Marrissa Harris finished in fourth place in the 4x200-meter relay. The team ran 1:36.54 to move into fourth best time in MSU history. Harris also competed in the invitational section of the 100-meter hurdles and ran 13.58 seconds to finish sixth.
"Priscilla (Gaines) ran an exceptional lead off leg in the 4x200 relay," Schmidt said. "I think they ran an exceptional race today."
In the Friday evening session of events junior Kendrick Poullard jumped a personal-best and regionally qualifying 50 feet 8.75 inches to finish second in the Section B of the triple jump. On the track, the women's sprint medley ran 4:01.32 to finish sixth and the men's 4x1500-meter relay finished fourth.
Both teams will travel to Oxford, Miss., for the Mississippi Invitational on April 11.