BATON ROUGE — The LSU Tigers defeated the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns 8-5 to win the NCAA Baton Rouge Regional on Sunday evening at Tiger Park.
LSU now moves on to the NCAA Super Regionals for the sixth straight season.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
Louisiana struck first as Ciara Bryan led off the game by taking a pitch from Ali Kilponen and sending it over the right field wall.
The Ragin’ Cajuns looked poised to score even more runs in the opening frame.
After Bryan’s homer, Kaitlyn Alderink drew a walk and then Jade Gortarez reached on a dropped fly ball in right field.
Justice Milz would strike out and then Alderink was caught stealing.
Kiponen would walk the next two batters (Alissa Dalton and Karly Heath) to load the bases. Kiponen would get out of the jam by striking out Kendall Talley.
LSU would take the lead in the bottom of the first.
Aliyah Andrews led off with an infield single and Ciara Briggs joined her on the base paths with a bunt single. Taylor Pleasants advanced the runners with a sacrifice bunt.
Kandra Lamb managed to get Doyle to fly out but then gave up a single up the middle to Georgia Clark which brought home two Tigers.
LSU added another run in the third when Pleasants hit a one-out solo home run off of Lamb.
Louisiana brought in Summer Ellyson in relief in the fourth but the Sun Belt Conference Pitcher of the Year struggled.
In the fifth, LSU’s Aliyah Andrews led off with a walk and Briggs singled to put two Tigers on the base paths. Ellyson then walked Pleasants to load the bases.
Amanda Doyle’s sac fly brought home one run but then base paths were cleared when Clark hit a three-run home run off of Ellyson.
The Ragin’ Cajuns got two runs across in the top of the sixth when Bailey Curry hit a two-run home run off of Kilponen.
LSU answered back with a run in the sixth as Andrews reached on a single and then Briggs got on with a bunt single. A throwing error allowed Andrews to score and Briggs to reach second base.
The Ragin’ Cajuns scored two more runs in the seventh inning.
Sophie Piskos led off with a single and Bryan reached on a fielder’s choice. Kaitlyn Alderink then reached on an error and advanced to second while Bryan reached third.
Jade Gortarez singled up the middle to score Bryan. Alderink then scored on a sac fly by Justice Milz.
The comeback ended as Kilponen had Dalton ground out to second base.
BIG NUMBER: 4
The Tigers took control of the game in the bottom of the fifth by scoring four runs off of Ragin’ Cajuns Summer Ellyson.
PLAYER OF THE GAME: Georgia Clark
The Tigers’ first baseman-pinch hitter went 2-for-2 with a game-high 5 RBI in the victory.
UP NEXT: LSU will host Florida State in the NCAA Super Regional next weekend at Tiger Park.