LAFAYETTE (KATC) – Big hits at the right time and the pitching of Summer Ellyson carried 15th-ranked Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns Softball to a 7-1, 7-3 sweep of Pac-12 foe California in front of 1,852 fans on Monday at Lamson Park.
With the doubleheader sweep, Louisiana (6-0) capped off a perfect run through the season-opening Ragin’ Cajuns Classic.
Raina O’Neal was the game changer in the opening contest, hitting a tiebreaking, three-run homer in the third inning. Lexie Comeaux provided the heroics in the nightcap with her bases-loaded, two-run single in the fifth inning which snapped a tie and secured the sweep.
Ellyson worked all 14 innings of the twinbill in landing two of the top wins in her collegiate career.
LEADING THE RAGIN’ CAJUNS
Comeaux and O’Neal each delivered four RBI. O’Neal’s production accounted for all but three of Louisiana’s runs in Game 1, while Comeaux saw three of her tallies come in Game 2.
Kara Gremillion’s two-run triple in the opener broke the contest open in the fifth inning, extending the lead to 5-0.
Bailey Curry and Alissa Dalton drew two walks apiece, key in setting up run-scoring innings in Game 2 including the pivotal fifth inning in Game 2.
Ellyson struck out nine and issued only one walk the entire evening. She held the Bears’ running game in check, holding them without a stolen base after entering the night with 12.
KEY MOMENTS (GAME 1)
Gremillion drew a two-out walk in the third inning to set up O’Neal’s homer which ended a scoreless battle.
Louisiana took advantage of a pair of Cal errors in the fifth inning which provided the two base runners for Gremillion’s run-scoring triple.
After the Bears plated a run in the sixth inning, Casidy Chaumont made a leaping catch of a line drive and turned a double play which ended the inning and prevented from runs from crossing.
KEY MOMENTS (GAME 2)
The teams traded single runs in the first three innings and were tied 2-all until Destiny Blueford connected for a solo home run which put Cal ahead 3-2.
After Louisiana went scoreless in the fourth inning, Ellyson recorded an all-important 1-2-3 frame in the fifth inning.
Curry and Dalton drew two-out walks in the home half of the fifth inning to set the stage for the game-winning rally which started with Julie Rawls being hit by a pitch with the bases loaded to tie the game at 3-all.
Comeaux followed with her single that she shoved through the left side of the infield to score two runs for a 5-3 lead. A defensive misplay on the next at bat allowed Louisiana to add two insurance runs.
No. 15 Louisiana welcomes Austin Peay, Jackson State and Stephen F. Austin for the 33rd Annual Louisiana Classics set for Friday-Sunday, Feb. 15-17 at Lamson Park.
The tournament, which begins with round robin before bracket play starts Saturday afternoon, closes out the Ragin’ Cajuns’ season-opening, 11-game homestand.