Tigers clinch series win with 7-3 victory over Mississippi State

STARKVILLE, Miss. - LSU junior right-hander Ryan Eades limited Mississippi State to one run in seven innings Saturday night, and freshman shortstop Alex Bregman launched a three-run homer to lead the second-ranked Tigers to a 7-3 win over the No. 8 Bulldogs at Dudy Noble Field.

The win clinched a series victory for LSU, as the Tigers improved to 18-1 overall and 2-0 in the Southeastern Conference. Mississippi State dropped to 18-4 overall and 0-2 in league play. The series concludes at 1:30 p.m. Sunday.

LSU won an SEC series over Mississippi State for the seventh consecutive time, and the Tigers have won five straight series in Starkville.

Eades (4-0) threw 108 pitches in seven innings, limiting MSU to one run on six hits with two walks and eight strikeouts. He improved his career record against the Bulldogs to 3-0.

"A superb effort by Ryan Eades tonight; he competed with every pitch and did a masterful job," said LSU coach Paul Mainieri. "It's so important after winning the first game of a series for your Saturday starter to give you a chance to clinch the series, and Ryan did just that tonight. He was tremendous in keeping their hitters off balance, and our defense made some great plays behind him."

LSU first baseman Mason Katz gave the Tigers a 1-0 lead in the top of the second with a solo homer, his third of the series and his ninth of the season. Katz has homered seven times in the Tigers' last five games.

The Tigers extended the lead to 3-0 in the top of the fifth when second baseman JaCoby Jones ripped a two-run double off of Mississippi State reliever Ross Mitchell.

The Bulldogs scored a run in the sixth against Eades when designated hitter Trey Porter double, moved to third on a wild pitch and scored on a groundout by leftfielder Jacob Robson.

LSU, however, added a run in the eighth on a two-out RBI single by catcher Ty Ross, and the Tigers padded the lead in the ninth with three more runs.

Centerfielder Andrew Stevenson led off the ninth with a single and moved to third on Jones' second double of the night. After rightfielder Mark Laird grounded out to the pitcher, Bregman unloaded a blast beyond the left-field wall against MSU reliever Preston Brown to give the Tigers a 7-1 advantage.

The homer was Bregman's second of the season and his first since February 26 at Louisiana-Lafayette.

Mississippi State touched LSU reliever Chris Cotton for a pair of runs in the bottom of the ninth when second baseman Brett Pirtle belted a two-run homer, his second dinger of the season.