SAN MARCOS, Texas – Carson Roccaforte extended his hitting streak to a career-high 14 games, going 2-for-5 at the plate with his 16th home run of the season, but No. 15-ranked Texas State scored nine runs in the first three innings and held off the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns, 11-9, to complete a three-game Sun Belt Conference sweep on Sunday at Bobcat Ballpark.
Jose Gonzalez hit a pair of home runs, including a third-inning grand slam, as Texas State (41-11, 23-4 SBC) scored four runs in the first, a run in the second and four in the third after falling behind 2-0 after a half-inning.
Louisiana (30-20, 17-10 SBC) scored in the first on a pair of RBI groundouts after Connor Kimple led off with a single before Max Marusak reached on a bunt single and moved to second on a Bobcat throwing error.
The Bobcats took a 4-2 lead in the bottom half of the inning after Louisiana starter Jeff Wilson (4-3) retired the first two batters of the inning. Gonzalez kept the inning alive for Texas State after hitting a solo home run before a Wesley Faison RBI double, John Wuthrich RBI single and a two-out error put the Bobcats ahead.
Gonzalez added an RBI single in the second for Texas State before his grand slam an inning later gave Texas State a 9-2 lead.
Louisiana, which recorded 18 hits in the game, added a pair of runs in the seventh when Marusak reached on an infield single and scored on Roccaforte's blast to right-center field. The home run by the sophomore tied him with Stefan Troclair, Caleb Adams, Scott Hawkins, Justin Hemme and Papo Ramos for the fourth-most in a single season by a Ragin' Cajuns hitter.
The Bobcats added a pair of insurance runs in the bottom half of the inning to go up 11-4 as Dalton Shuffield hit an RBI double and later scored on a passed ball.
The two runs by the Bobcats were enough as Louisiana scored five times in the eighth inning as Kimple hit a bases-loaded, RBI single, Marusak drew a bases-loaded walk, CJ Willis scored on a wild pitch and Tyler Robertson drove in a pair with an RBI single to center.
Tony Robie (3-0) earned the win for Texas State, scattering 11 hits and striking out five in 6.0 innings. Triston Dixon allowed seven hits and five runs in 1.2 innings of work before Tristan Stivors pitched the final 1.1 innings to record his third save of the weekend and 15th of the season.
Kyle DeBarge led Louisiana at the plate going 3-for-5. Julian Brock, who made his 44th consecutive start at catcher, finished 2-for-5 at the plate to extend his hitting streak to seven games for the Ragin' Cajuns with Kimple, Marusak and Robertson posting a pair of hits each.
Louisiana will close out the regular season with a four-game homestand beginning Tuesday at M.L. "Tigue" Moore Field at Russo Park. The Ragin' Cajuns will host in-state foe Nicholls on Tuesday at 6 p.m., before facing Little Rock in the final SBC series between the schools beginning Thursday (May 19-21).
All four games will be streamed live on ESPN+ with fans able to listen to Tuesday's game on ESPN Lafayette (103.3 FM / 1420 AM), the Varsity Network and the #GeauxCajuns app.
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