STARKVILLE — The best season in the history of the Mississippi State softball team came to a disappointing end Saturday at Nusz Park.
MSU was swept in NCAA Super Regional play, losing 3-2 to Arizona on Friday and 7-1 to the Wildcats on Saturday. Arizona advanced to the Women’s College World Series.
The Bulldogs (37-27, 10-14 SEC) had never made a Super Regional prior to this season. Mississippi State won its first NCAA Regional on Sunday in Tallahassee, Florida by beating No. 2 Florida State twice. MSU became the first team to ever upset a No. 1 or No. 2 national seed.
The Bulldogs won four straight elimination games in Tallahassee over the span of two days, capping their upset with a 4-3 win over the Seminoles. MSU beat South Florida and Howard before its two wins over FSU.
But that momentum didn’t carry into this weekend. Mississippi State’s offense struggled in Game 1 on Friday as the Bulldogs stranded 11 runners on base. Arizona scored the tying run in the top of the seventh, forced extra innings and hit a go-ahead home run in the eighth inning for its 3-2 win.
The Wildcats knocked out the Bulldogs with a seven-run fourth inning Saturday, keyed by a pair of MSU errors. Mississippi State scored its only run in the second inning.
Bulldogs catcher Mia Davidson played her final game with the program after a historic five-year career. Davidson leaves Starkville as the Southeastern Conference career home run leader.
Pitcher Annie Willis, infielder Montana Davidson and outfielder Allison Florian also played their final seasons at Mississippi State.
Both games at Nusz Park were highly attended. Friday’s contest drew a school-record 2,209 fans; Saturday’s game broke that record with 2,299.
Theo DeRosa reports on Mississippi State sports for The Dispatch. Follow him on Twitter at @Theo_DeRosa.