HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP)Christopher Sargent delivered a run-scoring single with one out in the bottom of the 10th inning to send Southern Mississippi to a 4-3 victory over Kennesaw State in an elimination game at the Hattiesburg Regional on Sunday.
Southern Miss (45-17) will play for the championship against LSU on Sunday night. A win by the Golden Eagles would force a second game on Monday for a berth in the Super Regionals.
The Golden Eagles’ rally started when leadoff batter Carson Paetow made it all the way to second base on a throwing error by Owls third baseman Cash Young with one out. Dustin Dickerson was intententionally walked and Reece Ewing followed with an unintentional free pass to load the bases. Sargent singled to left field on a 1-1 pitch to drive in Paetow with the winning run.
Kennesaw State (36-28) grabbed a 2-0 lead in the top of the fourth, scoring on Southern Miss third baseman Danny Lynch’s throwing error and a two-out RBI single by Brayden Eidson.
Southern Miss tied it in the sixth when two walks and a hit batter loaded the bases. Dickerson’s infield single plated the first run and Ewing drove in the second with a fielder’s choice.
The Owls took a 3-2 lead in the top of the ninth when Young doubled with two outs and scored on a single by Jones.
The Golden Eagles tied it in their half of the ninth when Sargent led off with a double and scored on a single by Lynch.
Hunter Riggins pitched the first nine innings for Southern Miss, yielding three runs – one earned – on seven hits and a walk, striking out six. Tyler Stuart (3-0) walked two, but struck out the side in the 10th to get the win.
John Bezdicek got the start for Kennesaw State, throwing 5 1/3 innings and allowing two runs – one earned – on one hit and two walks, striking out four. Luke Torbert (4-3) surrendered the unearned run in the 10th and was tagged with the loss.
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