LAFAYETTE - Powered by the long ball and great pitching performances from Austin Perrin and Connor Cooke, Louisiana outlasted Coastal Carolina, 5-3, to clinch its first Sun Belt series of the season at M.L. "Tigue" Moore Field at Russo Park on Sunday afternoon.
Ben Fitzgerald collected three of the runs Louisiana (13-11, 2-1 Sun Belt) scored on Sunday by smashing two home runs, becoming the first Ragin' Cajuns to do so since Handsome Monica on April 6, 2019.
Austin Perrin (1-1) provided a spark on the mound, tossing a season-high 6.2 innings and collecting his first win of the season.
Out of the gate, Louisiana plated three runs in the first inning off Keaton Hopwood (4-1) thanks to a two-run Fitzgerald blast and a solo home run from Carson Roccaforte.
It was Fitzgerald again in the third inning, hitting a towering, long ball to right field putting the game at 4-0, his second of the day and seventh on the season.
Anthony Catalano, who has started the last three games at second base, roped a two-out double scoring Kevin Fitzgerald to give Louisiana a 5-0 lead after four innings.
Perrin was dominant all afternoon, retiring the first 17-of-18 Chanticleers to start the game.
Coastal Carolina (14-8, 1-2 Sun Belt) made it a fight in the seventh inning, plating three runs with two outs on a two-run triple from Nick Lucky and an RBI-single from Cooper Weiss, which made the game 5-3.
Cooke entered the game in the seventh inning and retired the first three batters in the eighth frame and fanned the last two Coastal batters with the bases loaded to pick up his first save of the season and the 5-3 Louisiana win.
Louisiana will play Coastal Carolina tomorrow morning at 11 a.m. with a chance to win its third game in the four-game series.
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