May 8, 2014 7:36 PM by Allison Bourne-Vanneck
Softball action in Lafayette has hit the field, with UL hosting the 2014 Sun Belt Conference Softball Championship Tournament. Ragin' Cajun nation was in full force Thursday for UL's game against the Lady Toppers of Western Kentucky.
Each season, the excitement that comes with UL Softball has become a tradition. According to UL officials, UL Softball is considered by many as the university's most successful sports program, because of the number of championships won over the years.
For example, this year marks the 12th straight season the Cajuns have 40 or more wins with Michael Lotief as head coach or co-head coach.
Additionally, at the end of April, UL clinched their 12th Sun Belt Regular season title in school history, and their 16th Conference Championship between the Sun Belt (2000-present) and the Southland (1983-1988). The Cajuns have only failed twice in winning a regular season title since joining the Sun Belt Conference.
However, the number on every fan's mind now is the number one and winning the Sun Belt tournament. It's a journey that fans don't want to miss, and why many came to Lamson Park hours before UL took the field.
"We're skipping work today, so we're enjoying good college softball with South Alabama taking on UL Monroe," said UL Softball fan J.D. Morein. He, along with fellow UL Softball fan Troy Deslatte, arrived three hours early before UL took on Western Kentucky University.
"If you've never been to Lamson Park, if you've never been to a Lady Ragin' Cajun softball field, you really need to get out and watch these games. These girls are so exciting, they're so great," said Troy Deslatte.
Greatness has been a storyline with UL Softball. When it comes to the Sun Belt Conference Tournament, the Cajuns have won nine of the last 11 times.
"This is an outstanding year we've had so far. It's a great team. They're young, but man, they're awesome," said Debbie Landry, who's daughter, Shelly Landry, plays right field for UL.
University officials say they expect to fill all 2,800 seats each day of tournament action.
"When we host any type of tournament, whether it be a Sun Belt Tournament, or a Regional or Super Regional, our fans come out and we fill the stadium. It's a great experience not only for the fans, but for the players on the field," said Eric Maron who's the assistant director for UL Athletics marketing.
While the field will feature Sun Belt tournament teams, in Lafayette there's one thing you're sure to hear.