STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) — Kamren James singled to open the sixth and homered his second time up in the inning as No. 7 overall seed Mississippi State batted around in a nine-run outburst to put an emphatic end to VCU’s 22-game win streak with a 16-4 victory in the winners bracket of the Starkville Regional.
Logan Tanner’s RBI single capped a two-run first inning and the Bulldogs (42-15) never looked back.
VCU starter Mason Delane (3-1) lasted just three innings. Jaden Griffin replaced Delane and promptly gave up back-to-back home runs to Brad Cumbest and Kellum Clark to stretch the MSU lead to 5-1.
The Rams will take on Campbell for the second time in the regional, this time in an elimination game, first pitch is set for 3 p.m. VCU won the first matchup 19-4 on Friday. The Camels advanced on Saturday eliminating Samford in a shootout 16-13. If the Rams emerge victorious, they’ll face off with the Bulldogs again in the regional championship. VCU would need to beat Mississippi State twice to advance to the super regionals next weekend.
In other tournament action, Virginia rallied to overcome two Jacksonville leads and benefited from a five-run sixth to win an elimination game in the Columbia Regional 13-8. The Cavaliers will meet South Carolina for the second time in the regional in an elimination game at noon on Sunday, with the winner taking on Old Dominion in the regional championship. Like VCU, Virginia would need to win twice in order to advance to the super regionals.
Liberty takes on Duke for the second time on Sunday at 2 p.m. in the Knoxville Regional. The Flames beat the ACC champion Blue Devils 11-6 on Friday. Liberty fell 9-3 to host Tennessee on Saturday. Duke knocked out Wright State on Saturday with a 14-6 victory. The winner of the rematch takes on Tennessee in the regional final.
Norfolk State’s NCAA Tournament run came to an end on Saturday afternoon at the hands of Maryland. The Terrapins blanked the Spartans 16-0 in the Greenvile Regional.