By Adam Brown
Ole Miss baseball travels to Starkville to take on the Mississippi State Bulldogs in a three-game series this weekend. The first pitch of the series is this evening at 6 p.m. and can be streamed on the SEC Network+.
Ole Miss (19-14, 2-10 SEC) is looking for its first conference series win of the season. Last weekend, the Rebels dropped a hard-fought series to Texas A&M on the road.
During the week, Ole Miss split its midweek slate after dropping a close game to Memphis (11-9) and defeating Alcorn State (13-4).
In the win over Alcorn State, Kemp Alderman made his first appearance on the mound in the ninth inning. He faced four batters, striking out three and walking one. He also went 2-for-4 with a home run, three RBI, and two runs scored in the game.
Alderman has a nine-game hitting streak, a 28-game on-base streak, and has hit six extra-base hits in his last seven games. He is ranked third in the SEC in RBI and RBI per game and fifth in the conference in home runs and home runs per game.
This season, the Rebels offense has scored 31 runs with two outs over their last nine games and are hitting .302 as a team with two outs.
Mississippi State comes into the weekend with a 20-14 overall record and a 3-9 mark in SEC play. The Bulldogs are riding a two-game winning streak after defeating UAB (7-3) on Tuesday and Alabama (8-4) to close out the weekend series.
This season, the Bulldogs are led at the plate by Bryce Chance with a .352 average. His teammate Hunter Hines leads the club in home runs with 14.
Coach Mike Bianco will go with the same rotation from last weekend in right-hander Jack Dougherty (Friday), LHP Xavier Rivas (Saturday) and RHP JT Quinn (Sunday) for the Rebels. Mississippi State will matchup with RHP Cade Smith (Friday), RHP Landon Gartman (Saturday) and BHP Jurrangelo Cijntje(Sunday).
Ole Miss and Mississippi State split the season series last year with the Rebels winning the Governor’s Cup game, but only taking one out of three in the series in Oxford.