2021 College World Series: All State as Mississippi State earns first national championship
Barry Allen • 6/30/2021 in Baseball
(Austin Perryman/MSU Athletics)
The Mississippi State baseball tradition now includes a national championship.
After 11 empty trips to the College World Series, Mississippi State won its first national championship in any sport with a 9-0 win over Vanderbilt at TD Ameritrade Park on Tuesday.
Mississippi State (50-18) becomes the 30th different program to win the College World Series.
The Bulldogs also become the sixth first-time champion in the last nine years, joining UCLA (2013), Vanderbilt (2014), Virginia (2015), Coastal Carolina (2016) and Florida (2017).
MSU head coach Chris Lemonis led the Bulldogs to the national championship in his second trip to Omaha.
Lemonis played at the CWS with The Citadel in 1990 and was assistant coach at Louisville when the Cardinals made their first CWS appearance in 2007.
The SEC has now won 13 CWS Championships. The list includes LSU (6), Vanderbilt (2), South Carolina (2), Georgia (1), Florida (1) and Miss. State (1).
Right handers Will Bednar and Landon Sims came within five outs of a no-hitter adding drama to this historic night.
Vandy shortstop Carter Young broke up the no-hitter with a one-out single in the eighth inning.
Bednar, making his third start at the CWS, thew six no-hit innings as the Bulldogs handcuffed the Commodores for the second straight day.
Bednar (9-1) issued a pair of one-out walks in the first inning but avoided trouble when Parker Noland rapped into an inning-ending double play.
He also worked around a leadoff walk in the second inning.
The Commodores (49-18) never threatened again.
Bednar exited the game after six hitless innings. He struck out four and walked three. He retired the final 15 Vandy hitters he faced.
Bednar was named the 2021 CWS Most Valuable Player.
After a pair of seventh inning homers by the Bulldogs to extend the lead to 9-0, MSU turned the game over to Sims.
Sims worked the final three innings and was just as dominant. He allowed one hit and struck four batters en route to his 13th save.
The Bulldogs played defense, too. MSU did not make an error in seven CWS games.
MSU center fielder Rowdey Jordan singled to right on the first pitch of the game off Kumar Rocker setting the tone for the night.
Jordan moved to third base on a throwing error by Rocker on what looked like an inning-ending double play. Luke Hancock delivered a sac fly to put MSU up 1-0.
The Bulldogs stretched the lead to 3-0 with two runs in the second inning. Lane Forsythe had an RBI ground out and Jordan smacked an RBI double into the left field corner.
Hancock and Logan Tanner had RBI singles in the fifth to push the lead to 5-0.
The Bulldogs chased Rocker after 4 1/3 innings putting an end to one of the most iconic careers in not only Vanderbilt history, but SEC history.
Rocker (14-4) allowed five runs and six hits with six strikeouts and two walks in his final collegiate start.
MSU blew the game wide open in the seventh when Tanner hit a solo home run and Kellum Clark added a three-run blast.
Hancock and Tanner both had two hits and two RBIs. Clark finished with three RBIs.
Jordan finished with three hits and Allen had two hits.