STARKVILE, Miss. – Fielding issues plagued the Mississippi State baseball team during its 6-4 loss to Memphis Wednesday night at Dudy Noble Field.
The Bulldogs committed a season-high three errors and allowed the Tigers to plate three unearned scores. Memphis (4-0) actually leaped to the victory by scoring three times in the top half of the ninth inning.
“Our kids just ran away from who we are,” MSU head coach John Cohen said. “Our identity is pitching and defense. I thought we pitched it pretty well. We did not defend the field well.”
Memphis built a 1-0 lead with a single score in the fifth inning. Kane Barrow doubled and later scored on an infield error.
MSU answered right back with four scores in the home half of the sixth inning. With four different pinch hitters appearing in the frame, the Bulldogs received a two-run single from Cory Brown, an RBI-single from Alex Detz and an RBI-double from Wes Rea.
Ben Bracewell worked six innings in his first start of the year. The senior right-hander allowed three hits and one run (unearned), with a career-high seven strikeouts. It was the Bulldogs’ second quality start of the season.
Memphis answered with two runs in the seventh inning. Carter White and Barrow began the frame. An error for advancement loomed large; as it scored a run and a ground ball out scored the other.
Holder (0-1) was touched for two hits and three runs (two earned), with a strikeout.
A wild pitched third strike opened the door with one out in the Memphis ninth inning. After a steal of second base, an RBI-single by Bryce Beeler tied the game. A hit by Jake Little and infield error kept the frame alive and led to two more scores.
Jacob Moody (1-0) worked the eighth inning to garner the win, while Beeler came in from a designated position to face two batters for his third save of the season.
Memphis received seven hits, including a three-hit night by Barrow.
Detz had two hits and was the lone multiple hitter for MSU.
MSU remains home for a four-game weekend series with Holy Cross. The Bulldogs and Crusaders meet at 4 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. Saturday (doubleheader) and 1:30 p.m. Sunday.