HOOVER --- Junior ace David Price pitched his fifth complete game of the season to lead Vanderbilt to a 3-2 win over Mississippi State at the SEC tournament Thursday afternoon at Regions Park.
The Commodores improved to 47-11 overall and advanced to a 6:30 p.m. Friday night game against the loser of the Ole Miss/Tennessee contest that will be played later today.
Price (11-0) carried a perfect game until the seventh inning before giving up a single. He ended up giving up two runs on five hits with 11 strikeouts and no walks in picking up his 11th win of the year.
"This was one very well pitched game by David Price," said Vanderbilt head coach Tim Corbin. "When you think you've seen a good game he's pitched, he throws another one at you. It was a very hard lineup to get through, particularly three times, but it was his game from start to finish."
The Commodores jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the third courtesy of RBI singles by Ryan Flaherty and Shea Robin. The final run came on a double steal as Shea Robin was caught in a run down that allowed Flaherty to score from third.
That was all Price needed until the seventh when Jeffrey Rea broke up the perfect game with a lead off single to left. Joseph McCaskill then doubled him home and scored himself on Mitch Moreland's RBI double.
The play of the game then came when Brandon Turner singled up the middle in what looked to be a game-tying hit, but Moreland was thrown out at the plate by centerfielder David Macias to cut down the rally.
The Bulldogs challenged again in the ninth when McCaskill doubled with an out in the inning but Price buckled down and got Edward Easley to pop up to first and induced a Moreland groundout to short to end the game.
MSU was eliminated from the tournament and has a 33-20 record on the year.
Crosswhite, Lalor (7) and Easley. Price and Robin. W- Price 11-0, L- Crosswhite 7-4. Sv- None.
Game Notes: David Price picked up his 11th win of the year, putting him in second place on the school single season win list, one behind Jeff Peeples' 12 wins in 1973 ... With his nine innings today he is now the school's single season leader in innings pitched with 123. The previous high was Jeremy Sowers 122.2 innings in 2004 ... Today's win over Mississippi State was the Commodores first in four chances at the SEC Tournament ... Ryan Flaherty extended his hit streak to 26 games, one shy of the school single season record ... The Commodores have made it to at least the third game of the tourney for the third time in their last three appearances (2004, 2006, 2007).