Holding a lead over No. 3 Mississippi State early, the Arkansas State baseball team rallied late with a seven-run ninth but could not overcome a late deficit, as the Bulldogs outlasted the Red Wolves 18-10 Tuesday night at Dudy Noble Field.
The Red Wolves (9-17) held a 3-2 lead through the fourth, but the Bulldogs (25-7) extended their winning streak to eight games with runs in every inning from the fourth through the eighth to take the lead and seal it with a 12-run eighth, holding off a fierce ninth-inning rally by A-State.
Jaylon Deshazier led A-State with three hits and four RBI while Ben Klutts and Jake Gish tallied a pair of hits, with both of Gish’s being for extra bases. Nine different Red Wolves scored in the game while seven batters were responsible for A-State’s 11 hits.
Cade Smith earned the win in relief for the Bulldogs, pitching 2.0 innings of shutout relief, allowing two hits and striking out five. Lane Forsythe and Rowdey Jordan paced the Bulldogs with three hits apiece.
Tyler Jeans drew his first career start for the Red Wolves and delivered 4.0 innings, allowing two runs on two hits before being lifted for Jake Algee. The Brookland, Arkansas, native tossed 1.2 innings, giving up three runs on four hits and taking the loss.
Jordan led things off for the Bulldogs with a leadoff solo homer to make it 1-0 in the first, but Jeans settled down and retired the next nine batters he faced.
Gish answered Jordan’s homer with a solo shot of his own into the Left Field Lounge in the second. A-State took a 3-1 lead in the third inning on an RBI groundout by Tyler Duncan to score Liam Hicks, followed by Deshazier slapping a single to centerfield to drive in Klutts.
MSU tacked on a run in the fourth on a sac fly by Logan Tanner, driving in Brayland Skinner, then Forsythe tied it at 3-all in the fifth with a solo shot to right.
The Bulldogs took a 5-3 lead with two runs in the sixth on a two-out, opposite-field double by Forsythe to score Tanner and Brad Cumbest. MSU added another run in the seventh when a fielding error allowed Kamren James to score from third.
MSU then sent 15 batters to the plate in the eighth, scoring 12 runs to extend its lead out to 18-3. A-State closed strong at the plate, however, with Will Huber launching a leadoff solo homer on the first pitch of the ninth. After a pair of walks and a hit-by-pitch loaded the bases, Deshazier sent a bases-clearing double off the wall in left-center field to make it 18-7.
A walk allowed Sky-Lar Culver to reach and then Blake McCutchen sent a single through the left side of the infield to drive home Deshazier, making it 18-8. A double by Gish scored Culver and prompted the Bulldogs to go to the bullpen for Chase Patrick, who plunked Huber on his first pitch.
Drew Tipton reached on a fielder’s choice when Gish was forced out at third, but the Red Wolves scored their ninth run of the night as McCutchen crossed home. After Hicks reached on an error, Patrick got the called strikeout to end the contest.
A-State returns home for a three-game Sun Belt Conference series, hosting UT Arlington Friday-Sunday. All three games will be broadcasted live on ESPN+ while the radio broadcast of all three games can be heard on 95.3 The Ticket.
For the latest on A-State Baseball, follow the team by liking Arkansas State Baseball on Facebook, as well as following the team on Twitter (@AStateBaseball) and Instagram (astatebaseball).