Cup Champs

If, as they say, it all starts on the mound, then starter Brett Bukvich was the main reason Ole Miss beat Mississippi State 8-1. And his stats proved that point.

The fifth-year left-handed senior was named MVP of the Governor's Trophy after he didn't allow the Bulldogs basically anything.

Bukvich went six innings with a career-high 11 strikeouts, allowing only five hits with one run while not walking anybody through 101 pitches.

There was one hit batter and one wild pitch, but those certainly didn't matter as Ole Miss moved to 26-10 on the season. And Mississippi State fell to 19-18.

"I felt great and it was one of those nights where everything was clicking," said Bukvich, now 5-1 on the year. "This was just one of those times. The 11 strikeouts were great, but the biggest thing was no walks."

Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco said Bukvich was the key.

"Tremendous, and we know he can do that," Bianco said. "A terrific night for him, and we're really proud he could do that here as a fifth-year senior in basically his hometown against the instate rival. Twenty wins now. He's won so many games for us."

In the bottom of the second inning with the game tied 1-1, Zach Miller was hit by a pitch and Michael Hubbard got him home with a double.

Ole Miss got two more runs in the fourth with three straight one-out singles, including a two-run base hit from Kevin Mort to make it 4-1.

Logan Power led off the fifth with a double and scored on a single from Matt Snyder. Two outs later, Miller was again hit by a pitch to reach safely and back-to-back singles from Hubbard and Mort scored Snyder and Miller to give the Rebels a 7-1 lead.

Jordan Henry led off the seventh with a single, stole second, and scored on a David Phillips single to round out the scoring.

Rory McKean and David Goforth closed it out for the Rebels as Ole Miss heads to Gainesville for a three-game series with Florida this weekend.

MSU had one run on eight hits with eight left on base. Ole Miss got its eight runs on 12 hits with 10 stranded. Neither team committed an error.

Hubbard had a double and two singles and also drove in two runs with a run scored.

"We did everything we were supposed to do tonight," Hubbard said. "We were all locked in and did a great job hitting the ball."

Hubbard said it was one of those special nights for him personally.

"I was seeing the ball good," he said. "I was just glad to get out there and get a little bit of action."

Bukvich got the MVP award, but Hubbard got the t-shirt awarded by the coaches as their player of the game.

"He won the shirt tonight and was terrific," Bianco said. "Three big hits including a double that really broke it open for us."

MSU starter Ricky Bowen (2-2) suffered the loss for the Bulldogs as he allowed two runs on two hits with two walks and no strikeouts in 1.0 inning of work. Mississippi State used five pitchers on the night.


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