Three top performances from LSU baseball's sweep over Missouri
After sweeping Mississippi State and getting swept by Arkansas last weekend, No. 23 LSU (27-12, 10-8 SEC) beat Missouri (22-15, 5-13) on Thursday 5-3 in extra innings Friday 4-3 and then finished off the series with an 8-6 victory.
Here are three standout performances from the Tigers' first home series sweep in SEC play.
LSU BASEBALL TWO-STRIKE APPROACH:LSU baseball practiced with two-strike counts. How it helped end losing streak, beat UL.
LSU BASEBALL NINTH INNING RALLY:See LSU's Tre' Morgan, Dylan Crews ninth-inning hits to rally and beat MS State baseball
Josh Stevenson's heroics
Freshman outfielder Josh Stevenson didn't get the start on Friday. Despite earning a starting outfield spot for a five-game stretch, the former St. Thomas More star sat out the Thursday matchup and the first nine innings of Friday's contest.
But despite sitting for 18 innings, Stevenson was ready when called upon in the 10th inning of a 3-3 game. Stevenson's double to lead off the inning, his eighth hit of the year, opened the door for Cade Doughty's walk-off base hit into left field that scored him from third base.
The win got LSU's record in SEC play to above .500 and gave the Tigers their first home series victory against a conference foe, thanks in part to a freshman who had just six at-bats in the first month of the season.
Jacob Berry shines again
Entering the season, Berry was expected to add a major boost to an LSU lineup that was already stacked with talent. Berry, who played under LSU coach Jay Johnson at Arizona last season, smashed 17 home runs with a .352 batting average, .439 on-base percentage and 1.115 OPS as a freshman.
Since arriving in Baton Rouge, Barry has lived up to that billing, playing at least as well against SEC competition.
The first team All-American and Co-National Freshman of the Year last season smacked two home runs Thursday and finished the series going 6-for-10 with four RBIs. His batting average now stands at .370 and he's extended his consecutive on-base streak to 22 games.
Berry hasn't been perfect, as his third base defense has at times been troublesome. But his production at the plate has been as advertised, and that should boost the confidence of LSU fans once the postseason begins.
LSU BASEBALL BULLPEN:How LSU baseball's bullpen led the way in series sweep over Mississippi State
Tyler McManus' big weekend
Despite not playing Friday, McManus had a big series. The senior catcher went 4-for-7 and hit for the cycle over the course of the series, hitting a home run on Friday and a single, double and triple on Sunday.
Even prior to the start of the Missouri series, the Samford transfer has found his stroke at the plate lately after recording just three hits before the start of SEC play. McManus had three hits, including a triple, in the final game of the Mississippi State series and recorded hits against Grambling and UL.
McManus only has a .224 batting average, but his on-base percentage is up to .378 and on-base plus slugging percentage is at .792.
Koki Riley is a recruiting and high school sports reporter for The Daily Advertiser and the USA TODAY Sports South Region. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.