Scores

Final

(10) LSU 59

(5-1, 2-1 SEC)

Mississippi St 26

(2-3, 0-2 SEC)

Coverage: ESPN

7:00 PM ET, October 5, 2013

Davis Wade Stadium, Starkville, MS

1 2 3 4 T
#10LSU 14 14 3 2859
MSST 9 14 3 026

Top Performers

Passing: Z. Mettenberger (LSU) - 340 YDS, 2 TD, 1 INT

Rushing: J. Hill (LSU) - 16 CAR, 157 YDS, 2 TD

Receiving: O. Beckham Jr. (LSU) - 9 REC, 179 YDS, 2 TD

No. 10 LSU pulls away to beat Mississippi State

Associated Press

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Zach Mettenberger surveyed the field with plenty of time to throw and then delivered a perfect spiral to Odell Beckham Jr., who stopped short of the sideline, spun inside and galloped 33 yards untouched for the touchdown.

It was the ninth and final time the two hooked up for a completion Saturday night. And it proved to be the knockout blow.

Mettenberger threw for 340 yards and two touchdowns, Beckham had 179 yards receiving and two TDs and No. 10 LSU blew past Mississippi State for a 59-26 victory.

It was obvious from the outset that Mississippi State's defense was loading the line of scrimmage to stop the run, daring LSU to throw. The Tigers obliged, grabbing big chunks of yards on the Bulldogs' defense.

"They were playing the run game a little bit hard," Beckham said. "I give all credit to Zach. He's been making all the right plays and all the right reads since the season began."

It was a tight game for three quarters, but Mettenberger's touchdown to Beckham gave LSU a 38-26 lead on the first play of the fourth quarter and Mississippi State couldn't respond.

LSU closed the game on a 31-0 run, including four touchdowns in the fourth quarter.

Mettenberger completed 25 of 29 passes in another impressive performance during the senior's breakout season. Beckham was his favorite target -- but Jarvis Landry also caught eight passes for 96 yards.

It was a nearly flawless performance, and helped erase some of the sting of last week's 44-41 loss to Georgia. But Mettenberger said there's still room for improvement.

"There was about two series that I'd like to have back where we took our foot off the gas," Mettenberger said. "We just have to keep playing. We know the potential our receivers have in practice and we just have to keep striving for excellence."

LSU's Jeremy Hill added 157 yards rushing and two touchdowns while Kenny Hilliard added 39 yards rushing and three touchdowns. The Tigers (5-1, 2-1 Southeastern Conference) have won 14 straight over Mississippi State (2-3, 0-2) dating back to 1999.

"Any time you've got a balanced offense, and they're concerned you're going to throw the football, they're not completely confident in the play they call on defense and you can take advantage of that," LSU coach Les Miles said.

LSU has a 21-1 record under Miles following a loss.

Mississippi State's Dak Prescott threw for 106 yards and rushed for 103 more. Jameon Lewis caught seven passes for 111 yards and a touchdown.

The Bulldogs' offense was good, especially early, but LSU's was even better.

The Tigers' receiver duo of Landry and Beckham was unstoppable, even when Mississippi State appeared to have good coverage, and Mettenberger found them early and often.

"They won just about every one-on-one battle on the edge," Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen said.

The Tigers finished with 563 total yards.

LSU needed all those yards, because the defense was gashed for a second straight week. The Tigers gave up nearly 500 yards last week in a loss to Georgia and Mississippi State had some early success on Saturday with a two-quarterback system.

Prescott started after two weeks of mystery. Mullen said senior Tyler Russell -- who returned after missing three games due to a concussion -- would be the starter after the team's win against Troy on Sept. 21, but waffled on that statement as the LSU game drew closer.

The 6-foot-2, 230-pound Prescott has been terrific in Russell's place, providing much more of a running threat. On the team's first offensive drive, he rewarded Mullen's confidence with a 28-yard touchdown run to pull the Bulldogs to 7-6.

Russell entered the game early in the second quarter and also had immediate success, throwing a 20-yard touchdown to Lewis to pull Mississippi State to 21-16 in the second quarter.

The Bulldogs took a 23-21 lead on Russell's 59-yard touchdown pass to De'Runnya Wilson, but LSU responded with a 14-yard touchdown pass from Mettenberger to Beckham to take a 28-23 lead into halftime.

Russell's second touchdown pass was the 39th of his career, which set a Mississippi State record. He finished 7 of 11 for 146 yards passing.

The teams combined for 608 total yards in the first half -- 334 for LSU and 274 for Mississippi State.

LSU's defense tightened in the second half, giving up just three points.

"I thought we did a good job of battling for three quarters," Mullen said. "We just didn't finish."

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Team Stat Comparison

 
LSU
MSST
1st Downs2723
Total Yards563468
Passing340252
Rushing223216
Penalties5-275-41
3rd Down Conversions6-114-11
4th Down Conversions2-20-2
Turnovers12
Possession33:3226:28

Passing Leaders

LSUC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Mettenberger25/2934011.721
Mississippi StateC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Russell7/1114613.320

Rushing Leaders

LSUCARYDSAVGTDLG
Hill161579.8269
Hilliard6396.5334
Mississippi StateCARYDSAVGTDLG
Prescott121038.6128
Perkins10818.1032

Receiving Leaders

LSURECYDSAVGTDLG
Beckham917919.9233
Landry89612.0026
Mississippi StateRECYDSAVGTDLG
Lewis711115.9122
Wilson28040.0159

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERLSUMSST
TD10:02Kenny Hilliard 3 Yd Run (Colby Delahoussaye Kick) 70
TD08:42Dak Prescott 28 Yd Run (Two-Point Pass Conversion Failed) 76
TD07:18Jeremy Hill 69 Yd Run (Colby Delahoussaye Kick) 146
FG03:04Devon Bell 35 Yd 149
SECOND QUARTERLSUMSST
TD14:51Kenny Hilliard 34 Yd Run (Colby Delahoussaye Kick) 219
TD11:29Jameon Lewis 20 Yd Pass From Tyler Russell (Devon Bell Kick) 2116
TD06:28De'Runnya Wilson 59 Yd Pass From Tyler Russell (Devon Bell Kick) 2123
TD00:17Odell Beckham 14 Yd Pass From Zach Mettenberger (Colby Delahoussaye Kick) 2823
THIRD QUARTERLSUMSST
FG12:01Devon Bell 22 Yd 2826
FG04:33Colby Delahoussaye 29 Yd 3126
FOURTH QUARTERLSUMSST
TD14:50Odell Beckham 33 Yd Pass From Zach Mettenberger (Colby Delahoussaye Kick) 3826
TD14:19Jeremy Hill 5 Yd Run (Colby Delahoussaye Kick) 4526
TD06:46Alfred Blue 17 Yd Run (Colby Delahoussaye Kick) 5226
TD01:21Kenny Hilliard 4 Yd Run (Colby Delahoussaye Kick) 5926