USM scores season-high 17 runs in rout of Middle Tennessee
Southern Miss Sports Information
HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WDAM) - No. 17 Southern Miss scored a season-high runs on the strength of four home runs and 18 hits to defeat Middle Tennessee 17-0 Friday night at Reese Smith Jr. Field to capture its final Conference USA series.
The Golden Eagles (40-14 overall, 22-7 C-USA) won 40 games for the sixth-straight season and for the 14th time in their history. The Blue Raiders fell to 29-23 and 17-12.
Six different Golden Eagles had multiple hits in the game including three each from Christopher Sargent and Blake Johnson, along with two each from Gabe Montenegro, Dustin Dickerson, Reece Ewing and Carson Paetow. Montenegro’s two hits now give him 308 for his career as he moved ahead of Brian Dozier (307) for second on the school’s career hit chart.
Southern Miss scored in seven different innings in the contest and got home runs from Ewing, Sargent, Paetow and Johnson.
Ewing belted a solo shot in the first for his 10th, Sargent added a solo blast to open the fifth for his team-leading 19, while Paetow belted a two-run shot – his 13th – later in the frame.
Johnson highlighted a seven-run eighth inning to break open the game with a grand slam and his second round-tripper of the year. The seven-run inning tied the biggest scoring inning for the Golden Eagles this season. Johnson finished the night with a team-best five RBI.
Southern Miss collected three-run innings in both the third and fifth frames, while scoring single runs in the first, fourth, seven and ninth innings.
The Golden Eagles also took advantage of 10 walks by six Blue Raider pitchers.
Hunter Riggins pitched seven strong innings as he scattered six hits and walked none with five strikeouts to collect the victory and improve to 7-4 on the year. Tyler Stuart and Ben Ethridge each retired the side in the eighth and ninth, respectively, to help Southern Miss post their fourth shutout of the year.
MT starter Eriq Swan allowed six runs (four earned) on eight this with four walks and three strikeouts to suffer the loss and fall to 2-6.
The two teams complete their respective regular seasons with a 1 p.m., Saturday contest.
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