UMass Lowell, Nicholls State preview

Freshman Hunter Stovall was 2 for 4 with two RBIs on opening weekend. (Kelly Price/ Mississippi State)

Freshman Hunter Stovall was 2 for 4 with two RBIs on opening weekend. (Kelly Price/ Mississippi State)

For the second straight weekend, No. 20 Mississippi State will welcome two teams to Dudy Noble Field for a round robin series.

The Diamond Dogs host UMass Lowell at 4:30 p.m. today then play Nicholls State at 11 a.m. and the River Hawks again at 2:30 p.m. in a doubleheader on Saturday. MSU closes out the weekend with the Colonels at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday.

John Cohen‘s club is 2-2 on the year after taking two games against South Dakota State and losing twice to Florida Atlantic last weekend. The Bulldogs’ midweek match-up with Memphis was rained out.

Cohen is anxious to get his starting pitchers back on the mound after some shaky outings on opening weekend.

“We just didn’t answer the bell the first weekend,” Cohen said. “I think they’ve made some pretty good adjustments this week and I think they’re chomping at the bit to get back out there.”

Junior right-hander Dakota Hudson (0-0, 3.60 ERA) will draw the Friday night start for the Bulldogs while UMass Lowell counters with sophomore righty Andrew Ryan.

Junior southpaw Daniel Brown (0-0, 5.79 ERA) and junior right-hander Austin Sexton (0-1, 7.71 ERA) will start on the mound Saturday for State but which game has yet to be determined. Either junior southpaw Vance Tatum (0-0, 0.00 ERA) or junior righty Zac Houston (0-0, 2.45) will draw Sunday’s start.

UMass Lowell will open its season with Nicholls State at 1 p.m. today. The River Hawks went 17-26 last year including a 10-10 mark in the America East Conference.

Nicholls State is off to a 4-1 start to the year. The Colonels swept a four-game series from Mississippi Valley State last weekend by outscoring the Delta Devils 52-7 but lost 13-1 at Alabama on Wednesday.

I have covered Mississippi State in some capacity since 2004 and joined the Daily Journal staff in 2013. I enjoy short walks on the beach, performing concerts in my car and watching professional wrestling.

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