Mississippi State head coach John Cohen is over moral victories.
Real victories is what he wants to see.
His Bulldogs played hard Thursday night, but couldn’t overcome No. 1 LSU as they lost 5-3 in 14 innings to the Tigers.
The Bulldogs (23-23, 7-15) had three really good chances to score. Reid Humphreys hit a towering shot to deep center in the ninth inning to allow Luke Reynolds to score tying the ballgame up at 3-3. Matt Spruill was trying to score from first but he tripped, dislocating his shoulder in the process, and was tagged out.
Humphreys shot would have been a home run if he hit it to anywhere else in the park.
Ryan Gridley singled to left field with two outs in the 11th inning, but Jacob Robson was cut down out the plate trying to score the winning run.
“There’s some forces out there that don’t want us to win a baseball game,” Cohen said who’s club had the possible winning run touch third four times from the ninth inning on. “When those things happen to you, you have to ask yourself, ‘What’s it going to take?'”
Conner Hale had a two-run double off Trevor Fitts in the top of the 14th to give LSU the lead. Fitts threw 4 1/3 innings and only gave up the two runs on six hits in relief. The entire MSU bullpen – Zac Houston, Fitts and Dakota Hudson – only allowed two runs on eight hits in 10 innings of relief.
“We just went out there and competed our butts off today,” Fitts said of the bullpen. “I felt like Zac Houston did an amazing job of keeping the game where it was.”
MSU scored two runs in the first inning on three-straight hits, but had only one hit from the second inning to the eighth inning. The Bulldogs trailed 3-2 until the Humphreys double in the bottom of the ninth. The Bulldogs totaled four hits in the ninth.
The two teams meet back Friday for a 7 p.m. first pitch. Junior right hander Preston Brown (5-5, 3.76 ERA) will throw for MSU, while freshman righty Alex Lange (7-0, 1.86 ERA) will get the ball for the Tigers.