JACKSON, Miss. – Desmond Russell pitched the complete game and went 2-3 at the plate to help lead the Jackson State Tigers to a 9-3 victory over in-state rival Alcorn State Friday night at Braddy Field.
With the win JSU improved to a 27-21 overall record and a 9-13 conference mark. Alcorn State fell to an 8-39, 8-12 record.
Russell (7-4) pitched nine innings and struck out 14 batters. He gave up three runs on five hits. Charles Alridge (1-1) suffered the loss. In 6.1 innings of work he gave up nine runs on seven hits.
With the game tied 3-3 going into the bottom of the seventh inning, the Tigers broke the game wide open. Following a controversial call at home plate, when Gary Thomas was called safe by the umpire, Melvin Rodriguez hit a two run homer to give JSU a 6-3 advantage. The Tigers then added three more runs to make the score 9-3.
The Tigers put the first run on the scoreboard in the first inning as Gary Thomas scored on a Melvin Rodriguez single to left field. JSU increased its lead to 3-0 after tacking on two runs in the second when Aneko Knowles and Charles Tillery each scored.
Gary Thomas, Desmond Russell and Melvin Rodriguez each finished the game with two hits. Thomas scored two runs and had two RBIs while Russell and Rodriguez each scored a run.
The two teams return to action Saturday, May 3 at Braddy Field for senior day. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. Senior day activities will take place during the intermission between the first and second games.