JACKSON, Miss. - The Jackson State baseball team improved to an 8-6 overall record and a 5-0 Southwestern Athletic Conference record after taking the first two games of a three game series against the Mississippi Valley State Delta Devils. With the loss Valley falls to a 2-14, 0-2 record. JSU won the opener 10-0 and the second game 12-2.
The Tigers dominated the first game en route to a shutout. Desmond Russell (3-0), the SWAC preseason Pitcher of the Year, scattered five hits over eight innings of work. He also struck out six batters. Kameron Stady got the loss. In seven innings he gave up six runs on eight hits, while recording four strikeouts.
Offensively, Charles Tillery led the Tigers by going 3-3 at the plate with four runs. Russell helped his own cause, going 2-3 at the plate with two runs and four RBI. He also hit a home run. Ethan Bright finished the day with two homers (one in the first game and a second in the nightcap), as he went 1-5 with a run and three RBI.
Neither team scored in the first two innings, but JSU got on the scoreboard with a two run third when Tillery and Hampton scored on Russell double. The Tigers put two more runs on the board in the fifth when Hampton scored on a Russell sacrifice bunt. Tillery stole home to score the second run and give JSU a 4-0 advantage.
JSU added another two runs in the seventh. Russell hit a two run homer to make the score 6-0. The Tigers put the game away in the eighth. Hampton scored on a passed ball and Bright hit a three run homer to make the final score 10-0.
JSU continued to dominate in the nightcap. Brandon Gregory (3-2) picked up the win. In 5.1 innings of work he gave up two runs on four hits. Alexander Juday pitched 1.2 innings in relief to get the save. Montana Killier suffered the loss for the Delta Devils.
The Tigers jumped out to the early lead, scoring three runs in the second inning. Bright hit a two-run homer, scoring Malcolm Tate. Bryce Taylor then scored when Jose Cruz hit into a double play. JSU added a run in the third, fourth and eighth innings each.
The Delta Devils scored their only two runs of the game in the fourth inning. JSU broke the game open in the seventh, scoring six runs. Taylor scored on a Cruz single. Thomas scored on a Tillery single. Knowles and Cruz scored on a Russell double. Tillery scored after two straight walks and Russell scored when Taylor got hit with a pitch.
Thomas went 3-4 at the plate with a run to lead JSU's offense. Taylor, Tate and Russell each recorded two hits.
JSU and Mississippi Valley State will square off Sunday, Mar. 10 in the final game of the three game series. First pitch is set for 1 p.m.