PEARL, Miss. - Late season doldrums continued for the Mississippi State baseball team Wednesday night as the Bulldogs dropped a 14-3 decision to in-state rival Southern Mississippi at Trustmark Park.
The Bulldogs actually held a 3-2 lead entering the sixth inning. The wheels then fell completely off as the Golden Eagles scored three times in the sixth inning and blew the contest wide open with seven scores in the seventh inning.
By the time the contest ended, the Golden Eagles had scored the most runs ever tallied in 109 career meetings with the Bulldogs. Southern Miss also recorded its largest margin of victory ever in the series.
Southern Miss won its eighth straight game to improve to 26-17 overall. MSU dropped its eighth straight to fall to 20-25.
The Golden Eagles built an early lead with single scores in the first and second innings. The Bulldogs answered with three runs in the third inning.
In the MSU third inning, Jonathan Ogden started things with his fourth home run of the season. Sam Frost and Nick Vickerson followed with back-to-back hits. A Luke Adkins sacrifice-fly brought Frost home with the game-tying score. A follow-up sacrifice-fly by Russ Sneed brought Vickerson home.
The first three MSU pitchers - Luke Bole, Caleb Reed, and Matt Lane - held the Golden Eagles in check through the first five innings.
Things unraveled in the sixth inning with the Golden Eagles parlaying three walks, a hit batsman and only two base hits into the go-ahead scores. A double play ball brought the game-tying run home. An RBI-single by Adam Doleac placed the Golden Eagles on top for good.
Southern Miss expanded the lead with seven runs on six hits in the seventh inning. Kameron Brunty, B.A. Vollmuth, Dillon Day and Joey Archer had run-producing hits in that at-bat. The Golden Eagles also took advantage on an infield error, which prevented MSU from turning a double play.
The Golden Eagles completed their offensive tally by scoring twice in the eighth inning. Doleac had an RBI-triple and Mark Ellis had an RBI-double in that frame. USM finished with four extra-base hits in the contest.
Southern Miss finished with 16 hits. Taylor Walker and Vollmuth each had three hits. Multiple hitters for the victors included Doleac, Ellis and Tyler Koelling.
MSU finished with nine hits. Ogden and Sam Frost each had multiple hits.
Paxton King (2-1) picked up the win in relief for Southern Miss. King worked one inning of shutout relief. Mandella Mingo was touched for all three Bulldog scores when he worked the third inning.
Trey Johnson (0-2) took the loss. Johnson worked 2/3 inning, allowing two hits and three runs (all earned). Corey Collings and Greg Houston followed Johnson to the mound for the Bulldogs.
Southeastern Conference play resumes this weekend. MSU plays at Auburn. Game times are set for 6:30 p.m. Friday, 3 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday from Plainsman Park.