LAFAYETTE – John Taylor hit a three-run, inside-the-park home run to cap a four-run, first inning and four pitchers combined on a two-hit shutout as the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns claimed a 7-0 win over Jackson State in the finale of an eight-game homestand on Tuesday at M.L. “Tigue” Moore Field at Russo Park.
Max Marusak added a pair of hits and stole three bases on the night as Louisiana (12-5) opened a five-game week while snapping a 10-game win streak by Jackson State (12-2).
Blake McGehee made his return to the mound for the first time since Feb. 18 as he allowed one hit and fanned a pair of batters in 2.0 innings of work. Cooper Rawls (3-0) fanned six batters and allowed a hit in 5.0 innings for the Ragin’ Cajuns with JT Etheridge and Taylor Parrett combined to fan four batters of the final 2.0 innings of play.
Louisiana took an early 1-0 lead when Marusak led off the first inning with a single off JSU starter Francis Thorne, Jr. (0-2), before moving to third on a pair of stolen bases. Kyle DeBarge would follow with an RBI grounder before Carson Roccaforte was hit by a pitch, moved to second on an error and third on a stolen base.
Two batters later, Taylor would lift a two-out fly ball to the center-field fence which JSU’s Jatavis Melton was unable to collect and allow the junior college transfer to record his first home run of the season.
Louisiana added a run in the fifth to take a 5-0 lead when DeBarge drew a leadoff walk, moved to second on an error and third on a stolen base before scoring on Julian Brock’s sacrifice fly to left.
Heath Hood added a sacrifice fly in the seventh for Louisiana before pinch-runner Ben Robichaux scored on a wild pitch.
Jordan Young and Ty Hill each recorded base hits for Jackson State with Thorne – one of six pitchers used by the Tigers – allowing four runs with a strikeout in an inning of action.
Louisiana will return to action on Wednesday when it heads to Biloxi, Miss., to face Mississippi State (12-5) in part of the Hancock Whitney Classic at MGM Park. First pitch is scheduled for 5 p.m. and can be seen on SEC Network+ with fans able to listen to the game in the Lafayette area on 103.3 The Goat and ESPN 1420 AM.
Single-game tickets are available by visiting the Louisiana Athletics Box Office at the Cajundome or purchasing by visiting Account Manager [am.ticketmaster.com]. For more information call the Louisiana Athletics Box Office at the Cajundome at (337) 265-2104.
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