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The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

Diamond Dawgs clinch first SEC series against Alabama

The Mississippi State University baseball team competed against the University of Alabama on the road this weekend and brought home the Bulldogs’ first SEC series win of the season.
In game one, the Bulldogs and the Crimson Tide were tied 4-4 in the top of the fifth inning. While it seemed to be anyone’s game, the Bulldogs’ bats woke up in the seventh inning and scored seven runs. Outfielder Hunter Hines, third baseman Slate Alford and catcher Ross Highfill each contributed a homerun that pushed MSU to a 10-4 lead.
The Bulldogs were able to clinch the opening day of the series 12-8 against the Crimson Tide. Freshman Highfill helped Mississippi State achieve this victory with three hits, four RBIs and two homers.
However, MSU fell short on day 2 of the Alabama series. The Bulldogs were run-ruled 11-1 by the Crimson Tide, despite their solid performance on the day prior. Although MSU did not come out on top, Freshman Dakota Jordan was able to lock down a seven-game hitting streak during the contest.
Bulldog pitcher Bradley Loftin also made his SEC debut. Freshman Loftin appeared on the mound to relieve in the third. He was able to achieve four strikeouts and keep the Crimson Tide scoreless through the third and fourth innings, despite allowing a three-run homer in the second inning.
This series showcased everything but consistency. Walking into game three of the competition, both teams were on a mission for success. Game three was much closer as the Bulldogs and the Crimson Tide both fought to bring home the victory.
Alabama led the Bulldogs 4-3 in the bottom of the fifth. In the seventh inning, Highfill tied the game with a solo homer while Jordan hit a double that allowed second baseman Amani Larry to score and take the lead at 5-4.
Junior outfielder Kellum Clark helped put the game away with a two-run homer while the Crimson Tide defense allowed a wild pitch. Through a back-and-forth game, as well as a series that could have gone either way, the Bulldogs showed their grit and determination with an 8-4 win against Alabama.
The Bulldogs have won their last seven series over the Crimson Tide, and this MSU win marks head coach Chris Lemonis’s 300th career win as a head coach. Lemonis expressed his excitement about his team’s victory and their improvement.
“We fought the game for a while in SEC play. I think it’s exciting for our guys,” Lemonis said. “They’re motivated. They know Ole Miss is next weekend and it’s a big deal. To act like these series aren’t big, you’d be fooling yourself. It was a fun weekend. I like how we’re playing, and we still have to get better. We keep saying we’re a work in progress.”
Up next, the Bulldogs will travel to Birmingham, Alabama, to face the UAB Blazers on Tuesday before hosting in-state rival Ole Miss on Super Bulldog Weekend. The first pitch in Birmingham is set for 6 p.m. CT and will air on ESPN+.

About the Contributor
Colin James, Staff Writer
Colin James is a senior communication major. Colin is currently a staff writer for The Reflector.
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The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University
Diamond Dawgs clinch first SEC series against Alabama