LAFAYETTE – Jacob Schultz scattered five hits over seven innings of work and the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns Baseball team scored a pair of runs in the both the fifth and sixth inning to claim a 4-3 win over UT Arlington on Saturday in a Sun Belt Conference game at M.L. “Tigue” Moore Field at Russo Park.
Louisiana (27-17, 16-7 SBC) posted nine of its 12 hits after the fourth inning with Heath Hood and Julian Brock each finishing 2-for-3 at the plate. Max Marusak, Carson Roccaforte, Kyle DeBarge and Bobby Lada each had two hits as Louisiana won its seventh consecutive series for the first time since 2016.
Schultz (3-3) combined with Dylan Theut and Jake Hammond to fan eight batters while allowing a pair of base runners after the fifth inning. The senior struck out five batters and retired the final seven batters he faced after Boone Montgomery’s single in the fifth inning.
UTA (14-33, 6-17 SBC) took a 2-0 lead in the third inning after Steven Saunders hit a two-out triple past a diving Hood in right field to score Cason Gregory and Zach Henry. The Mavs threatened the add to the lead in the fifth when Tanner Rice and Montgomery each hit one-out singles before Schultz got Henry to ground into a 4-6-3 double play to end the frame.
Louisiana would carry the momentum onto the offensive side as it scored twice in the fifth inning to knot the game at 2-2. Hood led off the inning with a double, his second of the game off UTA starter Michael Wong (1-5) before scoring on Lada’s RBI single up the middle. Marusak would drive in Lada with a two-out single through the left side before Roccaforte singled to right to extend his hitting streak to a career-high nine games.
The Ragin’ Cajuns moved in front one inning later after Brock led off the sixth with a single and moved to third on DeBarge’s double down the left-field line. Brock would give Louisiana a 3-2 lead when he scored on Hood’s RBI grounder to short and Lada would deliver a two-out RBI single to left to drive in DeBarge.
Hammond pitched the final 1.1 innings for Louisiana to record his first career save, striking out Wilson Galvan with the tying run on base to end the eighth inning before retiring the Mavs in order with a pair of strikeouts in the ninth.
Saunders led UTA, which finished with six hits, at the plate going 2-for-3. Wong scattered 12 hits with seven strikeouts for the Mavs in 6.2 innings with Matt Novis pitching 1.1 innings of hitless relief with three strikeouts.
The final game of the three-game series will begin on Sunday at 1 p.m. The game will be streamed live on ESPN+ with fans able to listen to the game on KPEL-FM (96.5), the Varsity Network and the #GeauxCajuns app.
The traditional Mother's Day First Pitch will occur prior to Sunday's finale with the mothers of Ragin' Cajuns players throwing out the ceremonial first pitch to their sons.
Each Sunday is Family Day at Russo Park. Kids will be able to go onto the field for pre-game and line up with the team for the National Anthem. After the game, kids will be allowed on the field to run the bases.
All youth league players who wear their team jersey to Sunday's game will be able to receive a group rated ticket for $6 in the bleacher sections. Tickets can be purchased at the Cajundome Ticket Office or Russo Park Ticket Office on gameday.
Senior Jeff Wilson (4-2, 3.95 ERA) will start on the mound for Louisiana with UTA countering with right-hander Cade Winquest (1-3, 5.74 ERA).
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