KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Mississippi State could not overcome an early deficit as it dropped a Southeastern Conference baseball series to Tennessee.
Tennessee built an early three-run lead and scored in six different innings to record an 11-6 victory Friday night at Lindsey Nelson Stadium.
MSU dropped its ninth conference series of the year, falling to 24-29 overall and 8-21 in league play. Tennessee improved to 23-25 and 10-18 in league play.
Tennessee built the early 2-0 lead on an Andrew Lee double in the first inning. The lead grew to 3-0 on a Nick Senzel RBI-single in the second inning.
The Bulldogs broke up the shutout in the third inning on an RBI-single by Luke Reynolds.
An inning later, the Bulldogs were within 5-4 after a three-run fourth inning. Michael Smith had a sacrifice-fly, followed by an RBI-single by Ryan Gridley and later an RBI-single by Gavin Collins.
Christin Stewart had the answer in the home half of that inning with a two-run home run. His big night continued with a three-run home run in the sixth inning.
A sacrifice-fly by Jake Vickerson and RBI-groundout by Wes Rea produced the other runs for the Maroon and White.
MSU finished with 10 hits. Brent Rooker, Reid Humphreys and Gridley each had multiple hits.
UT finished with 10 hits. Stewart finished with three hits and five RBIs. A.J. Simcox and Parker Wormsley each added two hits.
Preston Brown (5-8) drew the start and took the loss for MSU. Brown worked two-plus innings, allowing five hits and five runs (four earned), with two strikeouts and two walks. A total of seven pitchers threw for the Bulldogs.
Trent Waddell, Vance Tatum, Zac Houston, Levi Mintz, Logan Elliot and Daniel Brown followed in relief. Waddell allowed three hits and four runs (all earned) in 3.1 innings of work.
Kyle Serrano (5-4) earned the win, with 3.2 innings of relief work. Serrano allowed one hit and no runs. Drake Owenby drew the start and was lifted during the fifth inning.
MSU and Tennessee will close the regular season with a noon CT start Saturday. The contest will be shown nationally on the SEC Network.
(From MSU Media Relations)