Falcons fall to Mississippi State, 16-8
March 2, 2008
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Air Force took a 2-0 lead in the first inning, but Mississippi State battled back for a 16-8 win in college baseball action Sunday afternoon in Starkville, Miss.
A Dudy Noble Field crowd of 2,479 watched the rubber game of a three-game weekend series. The teams split a doubleheader Saturday - MSU winning 3-1, before Air Force answered with a 6-4 victory. The Bulldogs improved to 4-3 overall. Air Force fell to 2-5.
Nathan Carter led off the game for Air Force with a walk and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by K.J. Randhawa. After Chay Derbigny walked, Addison Gentry's double drove in Carter for the first run of the game. Matt Alexander's sacrifice fly scored Derbigny for a 2-0 lead.
In the M-State first inning, Mark Goforth and Russ Sneed started things with consecutive singles. Both Goforth and Sneed later scored on a two-run single by Connor Powers.
In the top of the third, Derbigny singled and the scored on Matt Alexander's single for a 3-2 AFA lead. From then on it was all Bulldogs. Mississippi State tied the game with two runs in the third inning on four singles and a double. In the fourth inning, the Bulldogs increased the lead with a two-run double by Ryan Collins and RBI single by Duffy. MSU extended the lead to 13-5 two innings later on a two-run home run by Nappi.
For the contest, Connor Powers led the offensive attack with three hits and a pair of RBI. Duffy added two hits and three RBI. Collins, Sneed and Nappi each had two hits and two RBI. Butler and Grant Hogue also had multiple hits.
Air Force finished with 12 hits. Alexander had three hits and five RBI for the Falcons. Derbigny also had three hits. Addison Gentry and Nathan Carter each added multiple hits. Gentry also drove in three runs for the Falcons.
Ricky Bowen (1-1) pitched the first five innings to earn the victory. Bowen allowed eight hits and five runs (all earned) with two walks and six strikeouts. Andy Wilson, Michael Busby, Jared Wesson and John Lalor each worked one inning in relief. The MSU bullpen allowed four hits and three runs (two earned) the rest of the way. Starting pitcher Jake Petro (0-2) was chased in the MSU third inning and took the loss for the Falcons.
Air Force travels to Palm Beach, Fla., for the Papa John's Challenge, March 6-9. The Falcons will face Maine on March 6, Lehigh on March 7, UConn on March 8 and Penn on March 9. The Falcons' next home series is March 14-16 vs. South Dakota State.