March 9, 2008
Box Score |
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- It was a fitting location for Baylor head coach Steve Smith to earn career win No. 500. The 11th-ranked Bears took both games of Sunday's doubleheader 5-4 and 16-11 at Mississippi State, where Smith spent five seasons as an assistant coach from 1990 to 1994. With the wins, Baylor (10-1) has clinched the series and continues its best start since the 1984 Bears opened 13-0.
In the day's first game, Dustin Dickerson's two-out, two-run single in the seventh gave Baylor a 5-4 lead it never relinquished. Craig Fritsch worked out of a jam in the eighth and then stranded the potential tying run at second for his first career save.
Starter Kendal Volz (3-0) earned the victory, allowing four runs, only one of which was earned, on six hits and five walks with five strikeouts over 7.0 innings. Mississippi State starter Justin Pigott (2-1) was saddled with the loss; he surrendered five runs on 10 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts over 7.0 innings.
Baylor grabbed a 2-0 lead in the fourth on Dickerson's RBI double and Gregg Glime's RBI grounder. Mississippi State quickly answered in the bottom of the inning. Tyler Moore's leadoff home run started the inning, and a two-out error loaded the bases. Russ Sneed followed with a three-run double, giving Mississippi State a 4-2 lead.
The Bears recaptured the lead in the seventh. Beamer Weems' RBI single cut the deficit to one run before Dickerson's game-winning hit.
The nightcap was a walk-fest as the two pitching staffs combined for 27 bases on balls. Baylor established a school record, drawing 17 walks on the evening. Brooks Kimmey, who hit his first career home run in his final at bat of the game, walked four times, one shy of Shane Nolen's school record.
Baylor scored three runs in the first inning and never trailed. Mississippi State got a pair of runs in the bottom of the first, but the Bears answered with a two-run second and a two-run third to take control of the game.
Ben Booker was 3-for-5 with a career-high five RBI. Aaron Miller was 2-for-3 with two walks, and Beamer Weems clubbed his first home run of the season, a three-run shot that easily cleared the wall in left-center.
Starter Shawn Tolleson (1-0) picked up the win, allowing four runs, three earned, on seven hits and three walks with four strikeouts over 5.0 innings. Mississippi State starter Chad Crosswhite (0-2) did not escape the second inning and took the loss, giving up five runs on two hits and five walks over 1.1 innings.
Baylor and Mississippi State conclude their three-game series Monday at 1 p.m. CDT. The Bears send right-hander Willie Kempf (1-0, 1.80 ER) to the mound. The Bulldogs counter with right-hander Ricky Bowen (1-1, 12.00 ERA).
NOTES: Baylor leads the all-time series 5-3, including a 2-0 advantage in games played at Starkville. The Bears are 2-1 against the Bulldogs under head coach Steve Smith. ... Booker extended his hitting streak to nine games, one shy of his career long. He has reached safely in 22 consecutive games, dating back to last season. ... Shaver Hansen (six games), Adam Hornung (four games) and Dickerson (four games) also extended hitting streaks.