MISSISSIPPI STATE 4, ARKANSAS 3
Day 3 of the SEC Tournament began with the last game of the second round. The No. 5 seeded Mississippi State Bulldogs rallied and knocked off the No. 4 seeded Arkansas Razorbacks 4-3.
Arkansas got a solid outing out of starter Trevor Stephen, as he went six strong innings, allowing only one run on eight hits. The three different relievers that came in after him all gave up one run, allowing State to take the lead in the 9th inning.
Brent Rooker, the SEC Player of the Year, went 2-4, hitting the game-tying RBI in the ninth to improve his batting average to .415 on the season. Elijah MacNamee added three hits in five at-bats, boasting a stout offensive performance as well.
Mississippi State will now take on Florida in the winner’s bracket, while Arkansas will take on Auburn in the loser’s bracket.
SOUTH CAROLINA 10, MISSOURI 2
Thanks to a dynamo performance from the offense, the South Carolina Gamecocks advanced in the SEC Tournament after a 10-2 rout of Missouri.
Four home runs were slugged by the Gamecocks in the blowout win on Thursday. Alex Destino and Jonah Bride did the damage first, giving way to Carlos Cortes to step in and do it himself, too.
Cortes muscled not one, but TWO home runs in the victory. The two homers and six RBI that the Gamecocks leftfielder produced tied single-game records for the SEC Tournament, so Cortes had himself an historic day at the plate as as result.
Wil Crowe should earn some credit as well. The Gamecocks South Carolina hurler pitched six innings and allowed just four hits and one earned run. Crowe struck out nine Mizzou batters, and while he walked three and allowed three doubles, he and the defense behind him allowed for the damage to be minimum.
The Tigers’ season is over after their loss on Thursday. Meanwhile, South Carolina will take on the loser of LSU/Kentucky, which is set for later on tonight.
ARKANSAS 12, AUBURN 0
Chad Spanberger slugged THREE homers en route to Arkansas’ 12-0 victory over the Auburn Tigers on Thursday night.
Spanberger delivered his first of three dingers in the first inning. The Hogs’ 1st baseman blasted a solo shot to right field that went way, way far.
But that wasn’t enough for him though. Spanberger went to bat two innings later and decided to take Davis Daniel deep again. This time, the Hogs slugger hit a homer of the two-run variety in damn near the exact same spot as the first.
You’d think that would be enough, right?
Spanberger stepped up in his third at-bat of the game and delivered his most powerful blow yet -- a GRAND SLAM!
The offensive show didn’t stop with Spanberger, though. Jax Biggers slapped two triples in the win while Jake Arledge had a 3-4 day in the nine hole. As a whole, Arkansas went 20-35 (.517) at the plate in the rout.
Oh, and just for added measure, Arkansas pitched a no-hitter. Yeah. That happened too. A combined no-no was tossed by Dominic Taccolini, Matt Cronin and Josh Alberius as the Auburn offense couldn’t muster anything up.
The Hogs now advance in the SEC Tourney, while Auburn has been eliminated.
LSU 10, KENTUCKY 0
The final game of the day went just like the penultimate game of the day, ending early thanks to the run rule.
The Tigers were the beneficiaries of a pair of five-run innings in the nightcap in Hoover. First, the Bayou Bengals plated five in the bottom of the second thanks to loading the bases, and playing station-to-station with an error and a host of singles off SEC Pitcher of the Year Sean Hjelle.
Then, in the fifth inning, LSU tagged Hjelle for five more runs, with the biggest blow coming on a Kramer Robertson three-run homer to left to put the Tigers up 10-0.
As poor as Hjelle was for the Wildcats Thursday night, that’s how excellent LSU starting pitcher Alex Lange was. Lange struck out seven Wildcats and allowed just six hits over seven innings.
LSU will advance to Saturday where they’ll meet the winner of South Carolina vs. Kentucky.