(Photo Courtesy of Mississippi State Athletics)
There’s no funny one liner to open this article, no witty statement to make you chuckle before we go into the game recap. After an embarrassment like tonight, there’s nothing to laugh about. Mississippi State was routed by the Arkansas Razorbacks by a final of 8-1 Friday night at Dudy Noble Field. The #2/3 ranking that the Diamond Dawgs have been carrying around looked to be completely misplaced as they were never really in the game. The Razorbacks came out on the road and proved that they are an elite squad.
Christian MacLeod (2-2) drew the start for the Boys in Maroon and had a less than stellar outing. The lefty went 3.2 innings, giving up 5 earned runs on 6 hits and fanning 4. Of those 5 runs, 4 came on the long ball in what would prove to be a night to forget for the Maroon faithful.
Arkansas opened the scoring in the top of the 1st by way of 3 solo home runs. Matt Goodheart, Cayden Wallace, and Christian Franklin all 3 ran balls out of Dudy Noble Field to put the Hogs on top 3-0. Arkansas would add another run via the long ball in the top of 4th as Christian Franklin contributed his second big fly of the night to extend the Arkansas lead to 4-0. Later in the inning, a Robert Moore sacrifice fly plated Casey Opitz to make the score 5-0. The Bulldogs would finally get on the board in the bottom of the 5th when Lane Forsythe singled and advanced to 2nd on a Scotty Dubrule groundout before scoring on a Rowdey Jordan single to make it a 5-1 ballgame. The visitors would tack on 2 more in the top of the 7th when Jalen Battles reached on an infield single and advanced to 2nd on a wild pitch. Braydon Webb drew a walk and then Matt Goodheart singled to score Battles. A Brady Slavens single scored Webb to make the score 7-1. The Hogs added 1 more in the top of the 9th after Braydon Webb reached on an error and then stole 2nd. He advanced to 3rd on a wild pitch before scoring on a Brady Slavens single to make it 8-1. The Bulldogs would add a run in the bottom of the 9th as Luke Hancock singled and advanced to 2nd on a Brayland Skinner walk before scoring on a Lane Forsythe single to make the final score 8-2 and send the Bulldog faithful home from The Carnegie Hall of College Baseball in pretty foul moods with a series opening loss.
Though there wasn’t much offense to speak of for the Boys in Maroon tonight, Lane Forsythe led the way with 2 hits and an RBI. Rowdey Jordan added a hit, and an RBI and Luke Hancock had a hit as well.
There’s no need to panic with this Bulldog ballclub. This team is as talented as any in the country, and even the best teams have off nights like tonight. In speaking with senior outfielder Rowdey Jordan, postgame, I feel very safe saying that tomorrow will be a new day for the M Over S. I fully expect to see a rejuvenated Bulldog team take the diamond tomorrow, and good things will happen.
First pitch is scheduled for 2pm CT, with Will Bednar slated to take the bump.
As I said after the loss to LSU, there will be music after every game, win or lose. So tonight, I decided to go with The Chairman of the Board, and also a nod to Bulldog legend Brent Rooker, and a promise I feel very confident making. The best is yet to come. Goodnight and Go Dawgs!!