MEMPHIS, Tenn. – 12th-ranked Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns Softball used the home run ball to deliver the decisive blows in a 7-2, 9-0 (5 inn.) doubleheader sweep of Memphis on Saturday at the Tiger Softball Complex.
In Game 1 it was Jenna Kean lifting a three-run home run to straightaway center field in the seventh inning for valuable insurance runs, stretching out the lead in a game that was 4-2 heading into the final frame.
Louisiana (12-4) wasted little time jumping on the Tigers (1-10) in Game 2. It was Frankie Izard powering a three-run home run to center field that capped off a seven-run first inning that quickly put the game out of reach.
The Ragin’ Cajuns never trailed the entire afternoon after ending a scoreless affair in the third inning of the opening contest. Ciara Bryan (single) and Jade Gortarez (double) led off with back-to-back base hits leading to a pair of manufactured runs before Karly Heath skied a two-run home run to right center to open a 4-0 advantage.
The run support was more than enough for the pitching staff which limited the Tigers to two runs and scattered eight hits over 12 innings.
After Memphis strung together three hits leading to a pair of runs in the fourth inning of Game 1, Kandra Lamb recorded back-to-back scoreless frames to protect the lead.
Summer Ellyson, Vanessa Foreman, Heath and Casey Dixon combined for the shutout in the nightcap. Ellyson set the tone with 2-1/3 hitless innings in which she struck out half of the eight batters she faced.
At the plate, Heath produced a pair of multiple-RBI games and Bryan turned in two multiple-hit games.
- The home runs for Jenna Kean and Frankie Izard marked their first as a Ragin’ Cajun.
- Ciara Bryan extended her hitting streak to nine games, stretching out the longest streak by a Ragin’ Cajun this season. Bryan has now reached base in all 16 games.
- Ciara Bryan also increased her team-leading total of multiple-hit games to nine.
- With Jenna Kean and Frankie Izard hitting a home run, there are now 12 different Ragin’ Cajuns who have homered at least once in the 2021 season.
- Jade Gortarez continued her impressive showing this week, starting the doubleheader by posting a third straight multiple-hit game and ending the day extending her current hitting streak to four games.
- During the four-game hitting streak this week, Jade Gortarez is batting .500 (7-for-14) with three doubles.
- The pinch-hit RBI single in Game 2 for Justice Milz returned the team lead in RBI to her with her 16th run produced. Milz has had at least one RBI in nine of the past 12 games dating back to last Tuesday.
- Kandra Lamb’s 10 strikeouts in Game 1 tied her season-high total first set last Sunday vs. No. 8 Oklahoma State. Lamb has now tallied at least eight strikeouts in four starts.
- Karly Heath worked 1-1/3 innings of scoreless relief in Game 2 to remain flawless with no runs allowed so far in six innings of work covering three appearances.
- Saturday’s games marked the first-ever meetings between the Ragin’ Cajuns and Tigers in Memphis.
- With the doubleheader sweep Louisiana extended its all-time series lead to 6-0.
No. 12 Louisiana and Memphis conclude the three-game series at the Tiger Softball Complex on Sunday with a single game starting at Noon. Fans can listen to the action on SportsRadio ESPN 1420-AM and track live stats at CajunStats.com.
Following Sunday’s game, Louisiana will enjoy a five-day break before resuming play on Saturday, March 13 with Georgia Southern in the 2021 Sun Belt Conference opener at Yvette Girouard Field at Lamson Park.
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