Chris Stratton Tabbed For National, SEC Honors
The Tupelo, Miss., product, making his first start of the campaign and matched with LSU ace Kevin Gausman, held LSU to a run on four hits and .138 hitting, fanning all nine LSU starters, two Tiger batters three times each and recorded a trio of three-strikeout innings. At one stretch he retired 16 consecutive batters, 11 via strikeout.
"What a great way to start your conference year," said MSU head coach John Cohen. "It was one of the greatest college pitching performances I've ever seen. To walk the first batter of the game and then come back to pitch virtually a flawless game from that point on shows Chris' maturity and growth as a pitcher."
Both Stratton and Gausman left the game to standing ovations at Alex Box Stadium after 8-2/3 innings of mound work.
The 17 strikeouts by Stratton ranks as the most in the SEC this season and the most by a Bulldog pitcher since B.J. Wallace rang up 19 punchouts against Nicholls State in the 1992 NCAA Mideast Regional at Dudy Noble Field.
Stratton (4-0, 2.12), leads Southeastern Conference pitchers with 44 strikeouts and the MSU staff with 29.2 innings pitched. He earned SEC Freshman of the Week honors in 2010 after tossing seven innings of three-hit, seven-strikeout ball in a season-ending win at LSU.
Mississippi State hosts Alabama A&M Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. before taking on fourth-ranked Arkansas in a three-game weekend series (6:30/2/12 p.m.) at Dudy Noble Field.