LAFAYETTE – Julian Brock hit a pair of fifth-inning home runs, including his second grand slam in three games, and the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns erased an early deficit to claim a 13-1 victory over Grambling in seven innings on Tuesday at M.L. “Tigue” Moore Field at Russo Park.
Heath Hood went 3-for-4 and drove in three runs as Louisiana (15-6) scored two runs in the second inning, once in the third, two more runs in the fourth before an 8-run explosion in the fifth.
Sam Hill (1-0), making his first start at home, overcame a rocky start in the opening frame as he tossed 5.0 innings and fanned a career-high six batters. David Christie, Steven Cash and Conner Doucet closed out the contest for Louisiana with 2.0 innings of scoreless relief.
Louisiana, which swiped 10 bases to increase its season total to 71 overall, scored a pair of runs in the second inning off GSU starter Jeremiah Newman (0-3) as John Taylor scored on a double steal before Will Veillon scored on a two-out error to give the Ragin’ Cajuns a 2-1 lead.
Brock, who popped up in his first at-bat in the second inning, nearly missed a home run on his next attempt in the third as his fly ball to left was snagged on the warning track by Hatton and allowing Hood to score for a 3-1 lead.
Ben Robichaux would add a run in the fourth inning when was hit by a pitch and later scored from third on a wild pitch before Hood hit an RBI single to left to give Louisiana a 5-1 lead.
Brock made up for his near miss in the third inning when his leadoff homer to left off GSU reliever Brett Washington cleared the left-field wall. Veillon would add the second run of the inning for the Ragin’ Cajuns when he scored on a throwing error and Hood would add a two-run single to center to give Louisiana a 9-1 lead.
After Taylor was hit by a pitch, Brock crushed his second home run of the night and Louisiana’s fourth grand slam of the season with a blast off the scoreboard in left-center field.
Hill, making his third appearance for Louisiana, hit Grambling’s Tiger Borom to open the contest before issuing a walk to Nasir Frederick. After both runners moved up on a wild pitch, GSU (6-14) took a 1-0 lead on Trevor Hatton’s sacrifice fly to deep center field for the first out of the inning. The right-hander did not allow a hit until GSU’s Cameron Bufford hit a two-out double to right-center.
Jose Vargas added a seventh-inning, infield single for the Tigers. Newman, one of five pitchers used by Grambling, took the loss after pitching 1.2 innings and allowing a pair of unearned runs.
Louisiana will close out a stretch of 17 home games in a 19-game span on Wednesday when it entertains in-state foe and 2022 NCAA Regional participant Southeastern Louisiana (12-8) in a 6 p.m. contest. The game will be streamed live on ESPN+ and can be heard locally in the Lafayette area on 103.3 The Goat and 1420 AM.
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