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Cougar Baseball Loses Season Opener
Courtesy: Washington State Athletics
Release: 02/17/2012
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Feb. 17, 2012

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STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State scored three runs in the bottom of the second and the No. 34 Bulldogs defeated visiting Washington State 6-2 in nonconference baseball, Friday night.

The Bulldogs (1-0) took a 3-0 lead off sophomore J.D. Leckenby (0-1) in the second inning with three hits, a hit batter and a pair of sacrifice flies.

The Cougars (0-1) responded in the fourth to close within 3-2. Sophomore Collin Slaybaugh reached on an error with one out and advanced to second on a wild pitch. Redshirt-junior Taylor Ard, who tied for the Pac-10 lead in RBI last season, plated Slaybaugh with a single. After senior Derek Jones grounded out, sophomore Jason Monda doubled to score Ard.

In the bottom of the frame, Mississippi State tallied twice on a leadoff walk and three-straight, two-out singles. The Bulldogs capped the scoring with a run in the eighth against the Washington State bullpen.

"We lacked aggressiveness offensively," Cougar Head Coach Donnie Marbut said. "We did some good things overall, but it was not a great first game. Our bullpen pitched well and that was good to see from some of our freshmen arms."

Chris Stratton (1-0), the third of three pitchers for Mississippi State, earned the victory with four-shutout innings, giving up one hit and striking out three.

The series continues, Saturday at 2:30 p.m. Central/12:30 p.m. Pacific. Live stats are available on and radio play-by-play can be heard on and NewsTalk 1150 AM/105.3 FM.

Sophomore pitcher J.D. Leckenby made his first-collegiate start...freshman Bryce Jackson, redshirt-freshman Scott Simon, freshman Nick LaRoy and freshman Ty Jackson each made their collegiate debut out of the bullpen.

Washington State Cougars Baseball