STARKVILLE, MS (WLBT) - Another solid pitching performance, combined with timely hitting was the perfect recipe for the Mississippi State baseball program in a 12-0 victory over Southeastern Louisiana on Wednesday (Feb. 27) evening at Dudy Noble Field.
The Diamond Dawgs (8-1) pounded out 12 hits and walked eight times to account for the third double-digit run output of the season, while the pitching staff struck out 14 Lion (2-6) hitters for the eighth-straight double-digit strikeout performance to start the season.
The tone was set early by senior starting pitcher Peyton Plumlee, who struck out the first two batters he faced on his way to a career-best nine strikeouts. The right hander allowed just one hit and walked two to earn his first victory of the season. The trio of senior Jared Liebelt, junior Jack Eagan and junior Colby White closed out the shutout with one scoreless inning apiece.
Sophomore Justin Foscue got the offense started with a first-inning grand slam and junior Gunner Halter hit his first career home run to lead off the second inning. The Bulldogs added two runs in the fourth on a Jake Mangum two-RBI single, scored two more in the sixth and finished it off with three runs in the eighth.
Head Coach Chris Lemonis
On Peyton Plumlee
“Tonight, it was a better breaking ball, I thought. It was the first night that he really had his breaking ball and could use it in any count. He really established it early in the game and he held his stuff all the way through.”
Senior Peyton Plumlee
On the feel of the team right now
“This is the probably the best baseball team that I’ve ever played on in my entire life. That even goes back to my sophomore year with Brent Rooker and all of them. This is no doubt the best team that I have ever played on. Moving into this weekend, I feel like we’re going to have to take care of some business and if we do it gives us a chance for us to make a statement down and put our name on the board.”
Peyton Plumlee – Struck out a career-high nine batters in six innings of work. Allowed just one hit and walked two batters.
Jake Mangum – Drove in two RBIs with a pair of hits. Also walked and score a run.
Jordan Westburg – Reached base four times with two hits, one walk and a hit-by-pitch. Scored three runs.
Justin Foscue – Hit his fourth home run of the season, a grand slam, to account for his four RBIs.
Luke Hancock – Collected his first career hit, a two-RBI single in the eighth inning.
Cody Grosse – Collected both of Southeastern Louisiana’s hits in the game and reached base three times. Singled in the fourth, walked in the sixth and singled in the ninth.
The first five batters reached base, with one erased on a caught stealing, and Justin Foscue opened the scoring with a grand slam to left-center field. Jake Mangum walked and Jordan Westburg singled. Preceding a Tanner Allen base on balls, Mangum was caught stealing at third. After Elijah MacNamee was hit by a pitch, Foscue hit his fourth home run of the season to give MSU a 4-0 lead.
Mississippi State 4, Southeastern Louisiana 0
Gunner Halter led off the second inning with a leadoff home run on the first pitch he saw in the game. His first career long ball was hit 323 feet down the right-field line.
Mississippi State 5, Southeastern Louisiana 0
Rowdey Jordan doubled with one out and Halter walked to put runners on first and second with one out. After a double steal, Mangum plated a pair of runs with his second hit of the night.
Mississippi State 7, Southeastern Louisiana 0
Westburg reached on a one-out hit-by-pitch and moved to third on an Allen double to right field. Westburg scored on a wild pitch, before MacNamee plated Allen with a sacrifice fly.
Mississippi State 9, Southeastern Louisiana 0
Mangum walked to start the frame and eventually came around to score on a wild pitch, before Luke Hancock singled in a pair of RBIs with two outs in the frame for his first collegiate hit.
Mississippi State 12, Southeastern Louisiana 0
Mississippi State heads to the Lone Star State for three games in the Frisco Classic. MSU will open its weekend on Friday (March 1) versus Sam Houston State at 3 p.m. inside Dr Pepper Ballpark in Frisco, Texas. The Diamond Dawgs will also face Texas Tech (3/2; 6 p.m.) and Nebraska (3/3; 11 a.m.) at the event.