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No. 24 Bulldogs Back On The Road To Face No. 19 MSU



Christopher Lakos

Asst. Athletic Director, Sports Comm.

University of Georgia Athletic Association


The No. 24 Georgia Bulldogs begin their second straight SEC road test and third in four weeks starting Friday night at No. 19 Mississippi State. 

 

Friday and Sunday’s games will be streamed on SECN+ while Saturday’s action will be on the SEC Network. The entire series will be available on the Georgia Bulldog Sports Network.

 

Georgia (23-6, 4-5 SEC) opened conference by play in Lexington with Kentucky posting a sweep and now are off to an 8-1 start in the SEC with two road series wins. The Bulldogs returned home and swept No. 8 Alabama and then last weekend went 1-2 at No. 5 Tennessee. The home team has won 18 of the 21 series in league play this season. MSU enters Friday with a 19-11 mark and 4-5 in the SEC. MSU won a home series over then No. 2 LSU 2-1, and then went 1-2 at No. 7 Texas A&M and 1-2 at No. 6 Florida. The Gators posted two walk-offs to claim the series.

 

Bulldog Connections: Georgia’s Ike Cousins head baseball Coach Wes Johnson served as the pitching coach for MSU during the 2016 season when the Bulldogs went from worst to first. The 2016 MSU Bulldogs won the SEC regular season title and advanced to an NCAA Super Regional. Georgia assistant head coach Will Coggin played for MSU from 2007-08, has a bachelor’s and master’s degree from MSU and worked as a student assistant coach there from 2009-12 and assistant coach/recruiting coordinator from 2016-17. Georgia’s junior starting infielder Slate Alford spent his first two seasons with MSU, batting .229-10-39 in 71 games including 49 starts. The legendary Ron Polk, MSU’s Special Assistant to the Athletic Director, was Georgia’s head coach from 2000-2001. In his second and final season wearing the red and black before returning to MSU, Georgia won the SEC and advanced to the College World Series (CWS). He is one of only three college coaches to take three different teams to the CWS!

               

Top Hitters To Watch: Georgia leads the nation with 84 home runs and a .660 slugging percentage while batting .325. The Midseason Player of the Year according to D1Baseball.com and Perfect Game USA is Georgia redshirt sophomore infielder/outfielder Charlie Condon (.481-19-41, 1.130 SLG%, .593 OB%, 1.000 FLDG%). A projected 2024 first round draft pick, he entered the week leading the country in six offensive categories. After going 5-for-6 with two home runs and three RBI last Saturday, he has cooled off a bit, going 0-for-9 with one RBI in his past two games. Meanwhile, sophomore Dakota Jordan (.378-14-42, .838 SLG%, .514 OB%, 1.000 FLDG%) headlines an MSU offense that is batting .290 with 34 home runs and 35-for-39 in stolen base attempts.

 

Series History: MSU leads the all-time series 51-47 dating to 1916. Georgia claimed the 2022 series in Athens 2-1. MSU swept Georgia in 2019 in its last trip to Starkville. Georgia’s other trips to Starkville in the last 15 years came in 2010 and 2016 with MSU winning each of those 2-1. The Bulldogs last won a series over MSU in Starkville in 2008 when it went on to win the SEC and advance to the College World Series Finals.

 

Starting Rotation: Georgia will go with graduate left-hander Charlie Goldstein and sophomore RHP Leighton Finley in the first two games with Sunday’s starter TBA. MSU will announce their rotation Thursday afternoon.  

Last weekend, Georgia’s rotation against the No. 5 Vols featured Goldstein (4-0, 4.08) on Friday and, sophomore RHP Leighton Finley (2-1, 5.14) on Saturday. Goldstein got a win last Friday over the Vols, pitching six innings and scattering nine hits and two unearned runs with no walks and three strikeouts. Finely got a no decision (4IP, 5H, 6R, 3BB, 4K).

MSU’s starters in the UF series were junior RHP Khal Stephen (5-0, 1.91), sophomore ambidextrous pitcher Jurrangelo Cijntje (3-1, 3.34) and junior RHP Karson Ligon (0-0, 3.38). Stephen went six innings and allowed two runs on three hits with eight strikeouts. He got a no decision as UF rallied for three runs in the ninth. Cijntje fired an impressive seven innings and allowed just two run on five hits with eight strikeouts in a 12-2 win. Ligon was lifted in the third inning in Sunday’s game (2.1 IP, 1H, 1R, 3BB, 1K).

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Radio/TV/Live Stats Links

 

Friday at MSU, 7 p.m. ET (SECN+)

Radio: 960TheRef (Jeff Dantzler & David Johnston)

 

TV: SECN+ (Bart Gregory & Charlie Winfield)

 

 

Saturday at MSU, 8 p.m. ET (SEC Network)

Radio: 960TheRef (Jeff Dantzler & David Johnston)

 

TV: SECN (Dave Neal & Chris Burke)

 

 

 

Sunday at MSU, 2 p.m. ET (SECN+)

Radio: 960TheRef (Jeff Dantzler & David Johnston)

 

TV: SECN (Bart Gregory & Charlie Winfield)

 

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