TROY, Ala. – Sparked by a four-run first inning No. 14 Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns Softball completed a road series sweep of Troy with a 10-2 (6 inn.) run-rule triumph on Monday afternoon that kept the squad firmly atop the Sun Belt Conference standings.
The decisive series finale triumph followed up a 5-2, 8-7 doubleheader sweep of the Trojans on Sunday that had vaulted the Ragin’ Cajuns into the conference lead.
Louisiana (32-6, 14-1 Sun Belt) advanced its current lead over the previous SBC leaders to two games in the loss column – the same margin over the league’s other prior front-runner, Texas State, ahead of next weekend’s key series with the Bobcats at Lamson Park.
It’s the fourth consecutive Sun Belt series sweep for the Ragin’ Cajuns who increased their winning streak to 17 games. Louisiana also concluded its 10-game Spring Break road trip which began Easter Weekend at Georgia State, moved on to three consecutive days of play in Texas and then reached the final destination in Troy.
The first inning scoring spree that placed the Trojans (26-9, 10-3 Sun Belt) on their heels for the entire afternoon, all occurred with two outs. It began with a Julie Rawls RBI single and was quickly followed in succession by RBI doubles from Justice Milz and Kaitlyn Alderink and an RBI single from Karly Heath that opened a 4-0 lead.
Summer Ellyson (5.0 IP, 2 R, 4 H, 3 K) was able to tame the Trojans for the second consecutive day with the lone blemish being a third-inning home run that trimmed the lead to 4-2.
A double from Heath opened the fourth inning and led to her scoring on a sacrifice fly from Bailey Curry, then Ellyson reasserted her control by retiring the hosts in order in the bottom half. Two innings later it was Curry driving in another pair of runs as Louisiana began its march to the final margin.
- Louisiana became the first team in the 2021 season to post a run-rule win over Troy.
- Monday’s run total increased the team’s series total to 23 runs off of a Trojans pitching staff that had tossed four consecutive shutouts prior to the series.
- The Ragin’ Cajuns current 17-game winning streak is the longest active streak in the Sun Belt and the program’s longest since the record-setting, 29-game streak of the 2019 season.
- Summer Ellyson (13-4, 2.44 ERA) stretched her personal win streak to eight games, a streak that began on March 26 vs. South Alabama.
- The win marked career No. 87 for Summer Ellyson who moved within three wins of becoming the fifth pitcher in Ragin’ Cajuns history to amass 90 career wins.
- Summer Ellyson worked 12-1/3 innings of the 20 that Ragin’ Cajuns pitchers faced Troy’s offense, limiting the Trojans to four runs and 11 hits with only three going for extra bases. Entering the series, Troy was batting .293 and had produced an average of three-plus extra base hits per game.
- Julie Rawls and Bailey Curry both drove in three runs in the contest and finished as the team leaders in RBI during the series, finishing with five and four RBI, respectively.
- Kaitlyn Alderink posted a 2-for-3 showing at the plate for her fourth multiple-hit game in the past seven days. Dating back to last Monday at Lamar, Alderink is batting .579 (11-for-19).
- With an RBI single in the sixth inning Ciara Bryan extended her current hitting streak to 13 games. For Bryan, who has had at least one hit in all but two games this season, the present hitting streak is following up her career-best, 17-game streak posted from Feb. 26-March 27.
- Ciara Bryan also kept alive her season-long streak of reaching base in every game (now 38 consecutive games). It's the longest such streak by a Ragin' Cajun since Kara Gremillion ended the 2017 season with a 47-game reached base streak.
- As a unit, the Ragin’ Cajuns defense played error-free for the fourth straight game. The group has been charged with no more than one error over the last 15 games.
- Since adjusting the defensive alignment on March 26, with Kaitlyn Alderink moving to third base, the Louisiana’s defense has committed only 10 errors over 411 chances (.976 FLD%) – a stretch of 16 games.
- Louisiana collected five doubles in the final game of its 10-game road trip, increasing the total number registered on the road trip to 48.
- During the 10-game Spring Break road trip, the Ragin’ Cajuns posted a .378 average, outscored foes 98-22, held a 110-44 advantage in base hits, generated 48 extra base hits (26 doubles, 6 triples, 16 home runs) and defensively committed only four errors over 239 chances.
- The Ragin' Cajuns have now claimed 22 of their 32 wins in the 2021 season away from Lamson Park (19 true road wins; 3 neutral site wins).
- Louisiana improved to 42-6 all-time against the Trojans, now having won 23 of the last 25 meetings overall dating back to the 2012 season.
No. 14 Louisiana begins a five-game homestand at Yvette Girouard Field at Lamson Park on Wednesday, April 14 hosting Southeastern Louisiana in a 6 p.m. single game, a contest that was moved back one day due to expected inclement weather.
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