BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Trailing #19 Mississippi State 5-1 in the bottom of the first, Matt Riser took it upon himself to re-focus his Southeastern Louisiana squad.
"You're dealing with 18 to 22 year old young men who have the attention span of a gnat sometimes," the Picayune and PRCC alum said with a smile. "We've got to continue to stay aggressive with whatever we do, whether it's pitching, hitting or playing defense."
Clearly, the fiery pep talk from the Lions head coach worked. SLU (13-6) scored ten unanswered runs to rally and knock off the Bulldogs at MGM Park, their sixth-straight win over Mississippi State.
"Obviously we did not put the pressure on them offensively," MSU interim head coach Gary Henderson told HailState.com. "We talked about the things that we did well, we talked about getting away from some of our strengths, we talked about the fact that we're going to have to be able to go on the road and play in a good environment."
That environment semed like it would normally play into State's favor, as the announced MGM Park crowd of 3,318 appeared to lean toward the Maroon and White ten to one. However, the Lions didn't let the noise get to them, tying the game at five with four runs in the third, and then plating three more runs in each of the sixth and seventh innings to take the 11-5 lead they wouldn't relinquish.
While the Bulldogs fall to 10-7 on the year, it adds another marquee win for Southeastern Louisiana, who already boast victories over the likes of LSU and Purdue this season.
"The more opportunities we get like this, the more opportunity we get for success," Riser said. "It's another quality win, but the biggest thing I challenged them after the game (with) is we can't have a let-down after this. After we beat LSU, we had a let-down (that following) Friday. We're gonna lose some ball games, it's gonna happen, but as long as we go about our business the right way I can live with it."
The Lions hit the road this weekend to Beaumont, TX to visit Lamar, while Mississippi State will return to hope to open another five-game homestand.