STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Junior right-hander Dakota Hudson threw his second straight shutout Thursday night as No. 4 Mississippi State beat Arkansas 7-0 in a Southeastern Conference baseball game played before a crowd of 6,822 at Dudy Noble Field.
MSU improved to 38-14-1 overall and 19-9 in league play, while Arkansas fell to 26-27 and 7-21. The Bulldogs have won nine straight games, while the Razorbacks have dropped 11 straight. With Thursday night's win, the Bulldogs moved within a win of taking their ninth conference series in 10 weekends.
With two days left in the regular season, Texas A&M and MSU remain tied for first place in the Western Division standings.
"Dakota was outstanding tonight," MSU head coach John Cohen said. "You want that complete-game shutout but he was up there in pitches (finished at 120). He is throwing 94, 95 and touched 96 there at the end. That says a lot about his conditioning, character and toughness."
Hudson (9-3) threw his third complete game and the team's fifth this season, while allowing five hits with 10 strikeouts and two walks. The Bulldogs have thrown eight shutouts. Last weekend, Hudson blanked Auburn 4-0. Hudson has allowed one earned run in the last 26.1 innings and has 101 punch outs for the season.
Offensively, the Bulldogs had 12 hits, including a 5-for-5 night from freshman leadoff man Jake Mangum. Mangum joins Nathaniel Lowe with five-hit nights for the Bulldogs this season. He also takes over the SEC lead with a .423 batting average for the season.
"In my 24 years of doing this, I don't know if I have a seen a guy who doesn't hit fly balls (like Mangum)," Cohen said. "He finds a way to get on. There were some things we didn't do situationally. However, scoring runs early was big. We will need to have a better overall offensive night (Friday)."
The Bulldogs scored in the first inning on a sacrifice fly by Brent Rooker.
In the third inning, the Bulldogs then added three scores. Three errors by the Razorbacks helped the cause in that at-bat. Gavin Collins had a sacrifice fly, while Jacob Robson had an RBI-single.
In the fifth inning, Reid Humphreys had a bases-loaded walk. In the sixth inning, an error plated one run, while Lowe had an RBI-double.
Jack Kruger and Lowe each had multiple hits for the Bulldogs. The Bulldogs have now had 10 or more hits in six straight games.
The series resumes at 6:30 p.m. Friday (SEC Network +) and concludes at 5 p.m. Saturday (SEC Network).