State Sweeps Lipscomb, UConn In Saturday Twinbill
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Sophomore left fielder Hunter Renfroe doubled in three runs in the second inning Saturday afternoon as Mississippi State (9-2) opened a Saturday doubleheader with a 6-4 win over the Lipscomb Bisons (4-6). The Bulldogs also picked up a 3-1 win over UConn (3-6) Saturday.
State plated two runs off first-time LU starter Chris Nunn (0-1) and batted through the order for the fourth time this season during a four-run second-inning burst.
Freshman right-hander Trevor Fitts (2-0) replaced MSU starter Kendall Graveman in the fourth inning, picking up the win with 4.1 innings of four-hit relief. Taylor Stark closed out the ninth to earn his first save.
"Trevor is going to be a good one," head coach John Cohen said. "He's a guy that gets rewarded with pitching time because he throws strikes. That's so important to have guys that can come in the middle of the game and throw it in the strike zone. (Fitts) can do that."
Renfroe set career-highs with four hits and a team season-high four RBI while Daryl Norris registered his team-leading sixth multiple-hit game with two safeties.
M.L. Williams collected two hits and Gray Hutchinson drove in both Lipscomb runs with a two-out single in the fourth inning.
Clutch pitching was the game-changer for game two against UConn to rap up a perfect Saturday for the Bulldogs.
Nick Routt drew the start for the Bulldogs and tossed for six innings and allowed one unearned run in the top of the fourth. Routt gave up only four hits and struck out three in his total 79 pitches thrown.
"Nick (Routt) came out today and had quality stuff," Cohen said.
Evan Mitchell came in relief during the seventh inning and threw to nine batters. Mitchell allowed only one hit and struck out four in his 33 total pitches.
Caleb Reed picked up his second save of the season for the Bulldogs and closed the book on UConn.
Demarcus Henderson had a career-high three hits against the Huskies. Henderson also came across the plate twice for the Bulldogs.
"It's great to see a guy like Demarcus Henderson step forward and get some hits," Cohen said. "We're going to need Demarcus as a redshirt freshman to start figuring some things out and get him to contribute."
Mississippi State scored two runs early in the second inning off of a single up the middle from sophomore centerfielder CT Bradford.
The Diamond Dawgs struck again in the bottom of the sixth off of a two-out single up the middle from Sam Frost to bring Henderson around to score.
"That was big," said Cohen in reflection on Frost's single. "(Frost) really need that for a lot of different reasons. Nobody works harder in our club than Sam Frost. It's good to see him get rewarded."
UConn's sole run came in the top of the fourth off of a one-out double to right center from first-baseman Ryan Fuller.
Mississippi State will take on Lipscomb at 2:30 p.m., on Sunday. Lipscomb and UConn will face off in the early game at 11 a.m.