May 4, 2014 7:03 PM by UL Sports Information
LAFAYETTE, La. - Sophomore catcher Lexie Elkins went 3-for-3 with five RBI, including her conference-best 17th home run of the season, to help lead the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns softball team to a 9-3 victory over ULM, on Senior Day at Lamson Park.
The Ragin' Cajuns improved to 41-7-1 and finish Sun Belt Conference play with a 19-1 record, their best conference record since posting the same record in 2005. The Cajuns 18-0 in SBC play the year before, and have posted 19-1 records in three seasons, also doing so in 2001, the first season under coach Stefni Lotief.
Though a sophomore stole the show, the two seniors on the Ragin' Cajuns roster chipped in as well, with Natalie Fernandez going 2-for-4 with two runs scored and Shelbi Redfearn driving in a run on a sacrifice fly in the fifth inning.
The Cajuns jumped ahead early, scoring two runs on three-straight singles in the first inning, with Elkins picking up both RBI, scoring Fernandez and Haley Hayden.
Junior pitcher Jordan Wallace got the start in the circle, and baffled the ULM hitters for the first four innings before running into trouble in the fifth, and yielding to Victoria Brown out of the bullpen.
Wallace got the win to improve to 14-3, tossing 4.0 innings, and two batters in the fifth, allowing one run on two hits and four walks while fanning seven batters. Brown threw the final 3.0 innings, picking up her first save of the season, allowing two unearned runs on two hits and a walk, while striking out two.
The Warhawks found the scoreboard in the fifth inning, after Wallace opened the frame with a hit and a walk, Rochelle Roberts singled off of Brown to bring a run across, but Brown wouldn't let the game tie, retiring the next two batters with the Cajuns up, 2-1.
Insurance came in the bottom of the inning, by way of five runs on four hits, off a pair of two-run singles from Elkins and Gabby Felps, along with Redfearn's sacrifice fly, to give the Cajuns a 7-1 lead.
Two errors by the Cajuns in the top of the sixth inning cut their lead to 7-3, but Elkins and Samantha Walsh added two quick runs, on back-to-back home runs to lead off the inning. The homers came on the first two pitches of the inning, and were numbers 17 and nine respectively.
The five RBI day raised Elkins' season total to 64, the most in the Sun Belt.
The Cajuns will now have a bye for the first two rounds of the 2014 Sun Belt Conference Championships, and will play their first game on Thursday, May 8 at 5 p.m., against an opponent still to be determined.