The voice of and for USM students


The voice of and for USM students


The voice of and for USM students


USM baseball takes series over Missouri State

Sean Smith
Southern Miss pitcher JB Middleton reacts after striking out a Missouri State batter for a third out in the eighth inning of the third game of the weekend series.

Southern Miss Baseball just wrapped up a weekend series versus Missouri State, securing a series win and going 2-1 on the weekend. After this weekend, Golden Eagle Baseball has an overall record of 6-2. Southern Miss had a win on Friday, a loss on Saturday, and a win on Sunday to secure the series and a contentious rubber match victory.
“That was big boy baseball,” first year Head Coach Christian Ostrander said after Sunday’s winner-take-all win. “It wasn’t easy, they get the lead and we come back.”
Friday’s matchup had Niko Mazza take the mound, where in six innings he recorded seven strikeouts and allowed three runs on seven hits. Notably, Mazza did not walk any batters. Missouri State took an early lead in the top of the third, where Jake McCutcheon recorded a single before Mazza grabbed two quick outs. Before the end of the inning, however, Logan Chambers and Caden Bogenpohl hit two consecutive RBI doubles and put the score at 2-0 in favor of the Bears.
Missouri State starter Michael Lindsey walked three straight Golden Eagles to open up the bottom of the third before Ozzie Pratt and Slade Wilks hit back-to-back sacrifice flies. Carson Paetow then hit a blooper double to center field to score a third runner in the frame, and Southern Miss ended their scoring for the time being. Zack Stewart immediately tied the game back with a leadoff home run in the top of the fourth, and the score remained tied at 3-3 until the bottom of the eighth.

Nick Monistere started off the inning on a walk, and a clutch sacrifice bunt by Matthew Russo advanced him to second. Seth Smith, a left-handed hitting freshman, then hit a RBI double to score the go ahead run that would ultimately be the final blow for the Golden Eagles to start the series off on a win under the Friday night lights at Pete Taylor Park. Niko Mazza, Kros Sivley, and McCarty English combined for an impressive performance, limiting a hitting staff that was averaging 11 runs a game to just one run on Friday, and Sivley recorded the win.

Saturday was a different story, however. Southern Miss was more or less throttled by Missouri State, unable to score more than one run as the Golden Eagles lost 3-1 in a low-scoring matchup. The scoring started early in the bottom of the second inning when Nick Monistere was hit by a pitch. A strikeout grabbed the first out of the frame, and a wild pitch advanced Monistere to second. Seth Smith hit an infield single to put runners on the corners, and Lawson Odom recorded a sacrifice fly to take an early 1-0 lead. Unfortunately for the Golden Eagles, that was the only time Southern Miss would score. For the Bears, Nick Rodriguez started off scoring with a RBI single in the top of the third. Jahlani Rogers scored on a bases-loaded walk in the fifth, and Zack Stewart launched his second homer in as many days in the top of the sixth. Although the Golden Eagles had five hits and only six strikeouts, one run is all they had to show for it as Southern Miss fell to Missouri State 1-3. Billy Oldham, Ben Riley Flowers, and Colby Allen all made appearances, and Flowers picked up the loss after walking and allowing a single for the only two batters he faced.

On Sunday, the rubber match was full of responses and shift-ups by the Golden Eagles. Multiple changes on the batting lineup highlighted by Davis Gillespie moving back into left field and Billy Butler coming in the designated hitter spot, taking the places of Dalton McIntyre and Slade Wilks were the most notable changes, and their effects were felt immediately. However, the scoring started off with yet another solo shot homer from Zack Stewart to right field. All three of his home runs on the season came from the hands of different Southern Miss pitchers in three straight days.

Butler responded in the bottom of the second by slapping the first pitch he faced towards the wall for a double, and Gillespie singled to put runners on the corners. Braden Luke recorded a sacrifice fly, and Gabe Broadus scored a RBI double. Two Golden Eagle errors and two Missouri State singles added three runs for the Bears, putting them in a 4-2 lead. Just like in the second, however, Southern Miss used the bottom of the fourth to respond. Butler got on base and Gillespie knocked a 426-foot home run that nearly cleared the eagle head at the top of the scoreboard, tying things back up until Seth Smith hit another go-ahead RBI double in the sixth. Will Armistead, Chase Adams, McCarty English, and JB Middleton combined for a stellar pitching performance. Southern Miss pitching recorded a season-high strikeout count on Sunday with 17 K’s as an exclamation mark on the win. Adams picked up the win, hitting one batter and recording five strikeouts in the two innings he took the bump.

The Golden Eagles will take on Super Regional Host Indiana State this weekend.

Leave a Comment
Donate to SM2

Your donation will support the student journalists of University of Southern Mississipi. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to SM2

Comments (0)

All Southern Miss Student Media Center Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *