2021 College World Series: Vanderbilt uses big first inning to earn Game 1 win against Mississippi State

 Barry Allen   in Baseball

(Vanderbilt Athletics)

Vanderbilt delivered an early knockout on Monday night at the College World Series.

The Commodores sent 10 batters to the plate in a seven-run first inning and moved to within one game of its third CWS championship with an 8-2 win over Mississippi State at TD Ameritrade Park.

The two teams will meet in game two of the CWS Championship Series on Tuesday at 7 p.m. (ET). MSU will be the home team on Tuesday.

Vandy chased MSU starter Christian MacLeod just eight batters into the game. 

He became the first pitcher in CWS history not to make it out of the first inning in the finals series. 

MacLeod continued to struggle in the post season. In his five starts, including the SEC Tournament loss to Tennessee, he allowed 25 earned runs in 16 2/3 innings. He is 1-3 with a 13.49 ERA in those five starts.

In his two College World Series starts, he allowed 10 runs and recorded only six outs. 

He didn’t make it out of the first inning on Monday night. 

MacLeod (6-6) walked two of the first three batters he faced and then hit Tate Kolwyck and Parker Noland on consecutive pitches to bring home the first run of the inning. 

CJ Rodriguez followed with a two-run single to make it 3-1. Isaiah Thomas drilled a two-out double down the left field to score Noland and push the lead to 4-1.

Jayson Gonzalez greeted reliever Chase Patrick with a three-run home run to push the lead to 7-1. 

Vandy right-hander Jack Leiter used a three-pitch mix (fastball, curve ball and slider) to hold the MSU offense in check. 

He allowed just two runs and three hits in six innings with eight strikeouts and three walks. 

Kamren James hit a two-out solo home run in the first inning and Logan Tanner added a two-out RBI single in the fourth for the only damage against the soon-to-be Top 5 pick in the MLB Draft.

The MSU bullpen allowed just two runs in seven-plus innings. At one point they retired 13 straight Vandy hitters. 

Vandy tacked on another run in the seventh on Carter Young’s RBI single. 

The Commodores had only five hits in the win, but took advantage of five walks and two hit batters. Five of the seven walks and hit batters scored.

Maldonado earned his ninth save with three scoreless innings. He allowed two hits and added four strikeouts.

MSU managed only five hits, including two by Tanner.