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Louisiana Bounces Back, Draws Even in Sun Belt Series at Coastal Carolina

Offense delivered the decisive blow in the third inning to support a commanding effort from Summer Ellyson
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Posted at 12:25 AM, Mar 08, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-08 01:25:27-05

CONWAY, S.C. – With one big inning 5th-ranked Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns Softball gave Summer Ellyson all the support necessary, as she handcuffed Coastal Carolina’s hitters in a 5-0 win which evened the Sun Belt Opening Series between the two teams.

No. 5 Louisiana (15-6, 1-1 Sun Belt) broke free from a scoreless affair in the third inning when an RBI double from Kaitlyn Alderink and two-run triple from Raina O’Neal sparked a four-run inning.

Julie Rawls later added the finishing touches with a solo home run to lead off the fifth inning.

Ellyson limited the Chanticleers (13-6, 1-1 Sun Belt) to three hits in the contest, inducing 13 fly ball outs and receiving support from her defense. Key to her completing the shutout was a 6-4-3 inning-ending double play in the third inning after the first two Chanticleers had reached base.

It was the third shutout tossed this season by Ellyson, who upped her overall mark to 10-1. The seven-inning effort took less than 100 pitches (94 actual), and she faced only six batters over the minimum.

Alderink’s double was her sixth of the season and it extended her hitting streak to four games. O’Neal’s run-producing triple was her first, and the RBI total increased her season figure to double digits.

Alissa Dalton was the other top performer at the plate, finishing 2-for-3 which marked her second multiple-hit game in three outings since taking over the leadoff spot.

With the win, Louisiana remained in contention to extend its nation-leading streak of consecutive conference series won. The streak, which dates back to March 2013, was at 55 straight entering the series.

DIAMOND NOTES

  • The shutout lowered Summer Ellyson’s earned run average back below 2.00. She exited the contest with a 1.94 ERA.
  • For the fifth time in 11 starts, Summer Ellyson limited the opposition to three hits or less. She’s surrendered just 47 hits over 72-1/3 innings pitched.
  • With the win, Summer Ellyson extended her personal win streak in Sun Belt play to 23 games dating back to the 2018 season. Last season, she posted a 20-0 mark in conference play.
  • Since returning to the leadoff spot in the lineup last Sunday at Florida, Alissa Dalton is batting .556 (5-for-9). During the streak, Dalton has raised her season average to .283.
  • Now with 10 RBI, Raina O’Neal is the fourth Ragin’ Cajun to reach double figures – just five weekends into the season.
  • Alissa Dalton joined Katilyn Alderink in extending a hitting streak to four games. The duo has the longest active streak in the Ragin’ Cajuns lineup.
  • The solo home run from Julie Rawls was the first by a Ragin’ Cajun in the series in Conway. She took over the team lead, now with four home runs on the season.
  • The last time Louisiana was in the position it was now to claim a Sun Belt series was April 2018 at UT Arlington. The Ragin’ Cajuns lost the opening game that series, only to bounce back and claim the next two games.

UP NEXT

The 5th-ranked Ragin’ Cajuns and Chanticleers play to determine the series winner on Sunday at 11 a.m. (CDT) at St. John Stadium in Conway, S.C.

Radio coverage will be provided on SportsRadio ESPN 1420-AM in the Acadiana region and through the ESPN 1420 mobile app worldwide. Links for live video and live stats can be found on the softball schedule page at RaginCajuns.com.