Feb 21, 2014 6:36 PM by UL Sports Information
LAFAYETTE, La. - Haley Hayden had four hits and Sara Corbello hit her fourth home run of the season to help the Cajuns past Illinois State, 10-4, on Friday in the 2014 NFCA Leadoff Classic at the Eddie C. Moore Complex.
The Cajuns second game of the day was rained out in the bottom of the fourth inning, with the Cajuns trailing James Madison 2-0, with pinch runner Cassidy White on second base and Samantha Walsh up to bat with a 1-1 count and one out.
"I thought the offense came out and did a good job, jumping on them early," associate head coach T.J. Hubbard said. "We hit the ball hard in the first two or three innings and continued to build on that, which is what I like to see."
The Cajuns drew first blood against Illinois State, striking for six runs in the top of the second inning. The Cajuns benefited from five walks, including two with the bases loaded, and a pair of RBI singles from Hayden and Shelbi Redfearn to take a 6-0 lead.
Corbello added to the lead in the third inning with her solo homer with one out.
Illinois State found a way to score in the third inning, despite not yet getting a hit off of starting pitcher Jordan Wallace, coming around to score on a bases-loaded wild pitch.
The Cajuns added a run in both the fourth and fifth innings, with an RBI single from Shellie Landry in the fourth and from Hayden in the fifth to make it 9-1.
The Redbirds came up to bat in the fifth, needing a run or the Cajuns would win by mercy rule. Annie Heineman not only got the Red Birds the runs they needed, but also their first hit of the game when she hit a two run single off of Wallace, to make it 8-3 and extend the game.
That spelt the end of the day for Wallace. She tossed 4.1 innings, striking out nine and walking a career-high 11 batters, allowing just one hit on the day and three earned runs.
Victoria Brown made her season debut in relief allowing one hit and an unearned run while striking out four and walking one.
Each team added one run in the sixth before Brown got a 1-2-3 seventh inning to end the game and help the Cajuns to a 10-4 victory. Wallace received the win and improved to 4-1 on the season.
Hayden finished the game 4-for-5 with three RBI and two runs scored, improving her season batting average to .381 with 15 RBI.
"The biggest thing with her right now is her consistency," Hubbard said. "She is doing a great job of getting offense going. Fernandez gets on and Hayden does her job and we can score quick."
The Cajuns second game started after a very short turnaround, and change of fields, taking on James Madison.
The Dukes jumped to an early 2-0 lead in the second inning, but the game wouldn't finish. The south Florida rains started in the second inning and hit hard in the fourth, causing the game to be delayed until 10 a.m. EST tomorrow.
The Cajuns will also take on Hofstra (1:30 PM) and South Florida (4 p.m.), before returning to the complex on Sunday to finish out their tournament against Rutgers.