STARKVILLE, Miss. — Mississippi State got a strong start from ace Chris Stratton and a two-run rally in the fourth inning to post a 3-1 series-opening win over No. 2 Kentucky on Thursday night in front of 6,146 at Dudy Noble Field.
Kentucky (41-13, 18-10 Southeastern Conference) got seven hits in the game, led by Luke Maile's two doubles. J.T. Riddle also had two hits.
UK starter Taylor Rogers (6-4) suffered the loss.
Stratton (10-1) spread six hits over 61⁄3 innings, allowing one run. He struck out eight.
The Bulldogs (32-21, 14-14) took control of the game in the bottom of the fourth inning. Two hit batters and a Trey Porter double loaded the bases.
Wes Rea then snapped a 1-for-40 stretch with a two-RBI double.
UK got on the board in the top of sixth after Adams singled up the middle on a two-strike count, stole second, then reached third on a flyout. He scored on a double by Maile to cut the lead to 2-1.
In the sixth, Mississippi State's Mitch Slauter led off with a single and Brownlee pushed him to second with a sacrifice bunt to chase Rogers.
Reliever Walter Wijas then gave up a single to the one batter he faced. Sam Mahar then took the mound against Sam Frost, whose bunt down the third-base line brought in Slauter.