ARLINGTON, Texas – The Mississippi State baseball team wrapped up an impressive weekend with its second win over a Top 10 team on Monday afternoon.
No. 7-ranked Mississippi State beat No. 3 Texas Tech, 11-5, in the 2021 State Farm College Baseball Showdown held at Globe Life Park. The Bulldogs (2-1) played without both Will Bednar and Eric Cerantola this weekend, who are the Bulldogs’ No. 2 and No. 3 pitchers.
Cerantola was out due to contact tracing while Bednar did not play due to neck soreness.
Instead, the Bulldogs used used 14 different pitchers and beat both Texas and Texas Tech. The lone loss on the weekend came to No. 10 TCU, 3-2, on Sunday.
“The one thing it let us do is see some guys a little more than we would have in a normal weekend,” head coach Chris Lemonis said of missing Bednar and Cerantola. “We were down a bunch of arms this weekend. It’s a next-man up mentality and I give our guys a lot of credit.”
“I would have been happy coming here with all of our guys healthy and winning two of three against this field. I like the way we played.”
Mississippi State’s bats woke up late in Monday’s game. Texas Tech took a 4-3 lead in the bottom of the fifth inning, but designated hitter Luke Hancock responded in a big way.
After Josh Hatcher walked to open up the top of the sixth inning, Hancock blasted a two-run home run to right field, his second home run of the weekend.
After Texas Tech (0-3) tied the game, 5-5, in the bottom of the inning, MSU took the lead back for good in the eighth inning.
Logan Tanner singled to start the inning and advanced to second base on a wild pitch. Hancock then moved him over on a groundout, and Scotty Dubrule hit a RBI infield single to give MSU the lead, 6-5.
In the top of the ninth inning, Mississippi State added five runs on a RBI triple by Rowdey Jordan, a RBI single by Kamren James, a two-RBI single by Hatcher and a RBI single by Hancock.
Eight of MSU's 12 hits came after the fifth inning.
Hancock finished the game 2 for 4 at the plate with three RBIs. He had seven hits on the weekend.
“Obviously he’s a really good player and he’s seeing the ball really well, but that’s just what he does,” Hatcher said of Hancock. "He gives us great at-bats. There’s been a couple of times this weekend where I’ve led off the inning and just looked at Luke and told him that if I get on, he’s gonna score me. It happened almost every single time.”
Mississippi State will return to Starkville and play Jackson State on Wednesday at 4 p.m.