STARKVILLE, Miss. (WTVA/MSU Athletics) – Four-hit nights by Josh Hatcher and Hunter Stovall helped lead the Mississippi State baseball team to a 17-1 victory over Alcorn State Tuesday night at Dudy Noble Field.
The Bulldogs (11-10) got back in the win column by setting new season highs for runs (17) and hits (18). Seven different players collected hits as the Bulldogs scored in six different innings.
"We really did a great job of competing in the box tonight," MSU head coach Gary Henderson said. "We had some really good at-bats up and down the lineup. Zach really gave us a great start. He threw strikes. That's the most important thing, especially after you get a lead."
MSU got things going early with five runs in the first inning.
Jake Mangum hit a lead-off triple before scoring on a two-run home run by Luke Alexander. After a groundout, Hatcher followed with a double. Stovall singled, sending Hatcher to third base. A wild pitch scored a run, while a double by Hunter Vansau scored the fourth run. A ground ball out capped the big inning.
In the second inning, Tanner Allen drew a walk. Hatcher followed with a single. Stovall then hit a sacrifice fly to bring home the sixth run.
In the third inning, the Bulldogs pushed four across to run the lead to 10-0.
A home run by Marshall Gilbert got that frame off and running. Jake Mangum drew a one-out walk and later scored on a double by Alexander. A double by Hatcher brought home the final two runs of that frame.
A three-run fifth inning included a two-run triple by Vansau and an RBI-single by Jordan Westburg.
Alcorn State (6-13) scored its lone run in the sixth inning.
In the MSU half of the seventh inning, a pair of walks and a Stovall single loaded the bases. Gilbert then cleared the bases with a three-run double.
An RBI-single by Stovall capped the scoring in the eighth inning.
Zach Neff (1-0) threw the first four innings to collect the win. Neff allowed four hits and no runs with two strikeouts and no walks. Riley Self, Kale Breaux and Hatcher also pitched for the Bulldogs.
Overall, MSU finished with 11 extra-base hits (seven doubles, two triples and two home runs).
Mangum, Alexander, Westburg, Vansau and Gilbert joined Stovall and Hatcher with multiple hits.
State will close out its five-game homestand on Wednesday against Texas Southern, with the game to be streamed live on SEC Network+. Just as is the case for all midweek games in 2018, fans can purchase tickets for Wednesday for just $2 apiece.
Wednesday will also be "Friends Night" at Dudy Noble, with the first 500 fans through the right field gate to receive a "Friends" themed shirt. Fans can take part in additional festivities on Wednesday night based around the popular television show.