Florida beats MSU

Published 12:02 am Monday, April 11, 2011

From School Reports

STARKVILLE — Mississippi State failed to capitalize on multiple scoring opportunities as the Bulldogs dropped a hard-fought 3-1 decision to fourth-ranked Florida in a Southeastern Conference baseball game played Sunday afternoon at Dudy Noble Field.

Florida won its third straight series from MSU, as the Bulldogs last took a series in 2006 in Starkville.

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With the victory, Florida improved to 26-7 overall and 9-3 in league play. The Gators still trail Vanderbilt and South Carolina, both of whom swept this weekend, by one game in the Eastern Division standings. MSU fell to 21-11 and 5-7. The Bulldogs are tied with Ole Miss and Auburn for third place in the Western Division standings.

After winning Friday’s series opener, 7-5, the Bulldogs’ offense ran dry. MSU managed only one run over the final 21 innings of the series. Sunday’s defeat gave the Maroon and White back-to-back home losses for the first time this season.

With the teams tied 1-1, Florida scored twice in the seventh inning. An infield error could have gotten the Bulldogs out of the inning. Instead, Preston Tucker followed with a two-run single. The Bulldogs had two more chances – stranding pair of runners in the eighth inning and leaving the bases loaded in the ninth inning.

“We did a lot of average things bad today,” MSU head coach John Cohen said. “We didn’t have a good day. Our kids kept fighting and I am proud of that. We’ll correct what we need to and keep fighting.”