UL Softball Sweeps Doubleheader From South Alabama
The 5th-ranked Louisiana Ragin' Cajun softball team opened up Sun Bet Conference play in fine fashion on Sunday afternoon, sweeping a doubleheader from the South Alabama Jaguars at Lamson Park.
Louisiana won the first game, 3-2, before scoring 8 runs in the bottom half of the 6th inning to take the second game, 10-6, while extending their current win streak to 12 games.
In the opening game, South Alabama got on the scoreboard first, scoring two runs in the top half of the first inning, when Emily Messer led off the game with a bunt single, advanced to second on a Kaleigh Todd single, and later scored on a fielder's choice ground ball off the bat of Haleigh Lowe, before Kristian Foster drove home Todd with a two-out single, giving them a 2-0 lead.
Louisiana knotted things up in the bottom half of the fourth inning, when senior catcher Lexie Elkins opened the frame with a solo home run, her 15th of the season, before sophomore centerfielder Aleah Craighton blasted a one-out homer, her 5th of the season, one batter later, to tie the game, 2-2.
The score stayed that way until the bottom half of the 5th inning, when the Cajuns grabbed the lead, after senior left-fielder Shellie Landry single home junior right-fielder Kassidy Zeringue, giving them a 3-2 advantage.
That was all UL needed as they hung on for the one-run victory.
South Alabama, who outhit Louisiana, 5-4, was led at the plate by Messer, who went 2-for-4 with a run scored.
The Cajuns were paced by Elkins and Craighton, who both homered.
Alex Stewart recorded her 9th-consecutive victory of the year in the circle, allowing 2 runs on 5 hits, while equaling a career-high with 9 strikeouts.
Devin Brown (5-6) suffered the loss for the Jaguars, allowing 3 runs on 4 hits, while striking out 10 batters.
In the second game, just like they did in the first game, South Alabama got on the scoreboard first, scoring three runs, including one unearned, on only one hit, in the top half of the first inning, to grab a quick 3-0 lead.
The Jaguars added another run in the top half of the second inning, when Messer doubled, before scoring on a two-out infield single off the bat of Stephanie Pilkington, to extend the advantage to 4-0.
Louisiana scored two runs, both unearned, in the bottom half of the second inning, when Aleah Craighton and Kendall Smith, who was running for Sara Corbello scored on a throwing error by the South Alabama shortstop Foster, to trim the deficit to 4-2
South Alabama got the two runs back in the top half of the fifth inning, when Amanda Minahan hit a two-run home run, giving them a 6-2 lead.
The Cajuns took the lead, and actually broke the game wide open in the bottom of the 6th inning, scoring 8 runs on 5 hits, with the highlight of the frame being a 3-run homer by Craighton, her 6th of the year, to give them a 10-6 lead, and the eventual 4-run victory.
For Louisiana, who outhit South Alabama, 10-6, Craighton, Elkins, and Kelsey Vincent each collected 2 hits apiece, while Craighton homered.
In a losing cause for South Alabama, Minahan homered, wile Minahan and Lowe each drove in two runs.
Kylee Jo Trahan (7-1) recorded the win inside the circle for the Cajuns. tossing two perfect innings of relief, after being taken out only three batters in, after starting the game.
Destin Vicknair (5-3) suffered the loss for the Jaguars, allowing 8 hits and 6 runs over 5.1 innings of work.
With the two wins, Louisiana, who has now won 12-straight, improved to 19-1, overall, and 2-0 in Sun Belt Conference play, while South Alabama fell to 10-10, and 0-2, respectively.
The Cajuns return to action on Wednesday night at 6 pm, hosting the McNeese St. Cowgirls, in a non-conference affair.