UL Softball Sweeps Doubleheader, Clinches Title
The 8th-ranked Louisiana Ragin’ Cajun softball team recorded two more Sun Belt Conference wins on Saturday, sweeping a doubleheader from the Georgia Southern Eagles in Statesboro, Georgia.
Louisiana won the first game, 5-0, before capturing the second game, 12-1, in 6-inning, mercy-rule fashion, to outscore Georgia Southern, 17-1, on the day.
The two wins clinched the regular season Sun Belt Conference championship for the Cajuns, their third-straight, and 14th in the last 16 seasons, as well as the top-seed in the 2016 Sun Belt Conference Tournament.
The two victories also moved UL's current Sun Belt Conference win streak to 14 games, while also improving their overall win streak to 6 games.
With the two wins, Louisiana improved to 37-6, overall, and 18-1 in Sun Belt Conference play, while Georgia Southern fell to 28-24, and 11-9, respectively.
Louisiana got on the scoreboard first in the opener, scoring 5 runs on 5 hits in the top half of the third inning, including a two-run double by sophomore shortstop D.J. Sanders, and a two-run single off the bat of freshman third baseman Kara Gremillion, to grab a 5-0 lead.
That was all the runs that the Cajuns would score, and all that they would need, as they went on to the shutout win.
Junior second baseman Hayden, Landry led the way at the plate for UL, who outhit Georgia Southern, 7-3, going 2-for-3 with a run scored, while Sanders and Gremillion each drove in two runs.
Junior right-hander Alex Stewart (21-3) picked-up the win in the circle for Louisiana, tossing 6 innings of 3-hit shutout softball, without a walk, while striking out 8 batters
Dixie Raley (21-11) suffered the loss for Georgia Southern, allowing 5 runs on 6 hits in 3 innings.
Louisiana, as they did in the opener, got on the scoreboard first in the second game. Not only that, but just as they did in the first game, they scored five runs in the frame, all with two outs, including a two-run home run by senior designated player Sara Corbello, her 10th of the season, and a two-out single by junior right-fielder Kassidy Zeringue, to take a 5-0 lead.
The score stayed that way until the top half of the 5th inning, when Corbello struck again, blasting another two-run homer, to widen the UL advantage to 7-0.
The Cajuns put the game completely away in the top half of the 6th inning, scoring 5 runs, highlighted by a grand slam home run off the bat of sophomore shortstop D.J. Sanders, her 16th long ball of the season, to make it 12-0.
Georgia Southern scored their first run of the game, and first run of the day in the bottom half of the 6th inning, but it was far too little, too late, as the Cajuns went on to the 11-run mercy-rule win.
Louisiana, who out-hit Georgia Southern, 9-5, was led at the plate by Corbello, who went 3-for-4 with 2 homers and 4 runs batted in, while Sanders added the grand slam homer.
Alex Stewart (22-3) recorded the win in the circle for the Cajuns, tossing five innings of four-hit softball.
Kierra Kamp (6-10) suffered the setback for the Eagles, allowing 9 runs, including 7 earned runs, while walking on 5 hits, including 9 earned runs, on 5 hits, while walking 6 and striking out 1.
The two teams will conclude the three-game set with a single game on Sunday at noon.
You can hear all the play-by-play action on ESPN 1420 & espn1420, beginning with the pregame show at 11:15 am.