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Softball: 7th-ranked Ragin’ Cajuns Fend off Challenge from McNeese
Louisiana overcomes late rally from Cowgirls in claiming extra innings decision
LAFAYETTE – No. 7 Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns Softball battled through late-game momentum shifts to overcome McNeese in extra innings, taking an 8-7 (8 inn.) victory Wednesday evening at Yvette Girouard Field at Lamson Park.
Having led since the first inning, the Ragin' Cajuns (6-0) found themselves in a stalemate at 3-all in the fifth inning following a solo home run from McNeese's Chloe Gomez.
A two-run single from Justice Milz and two-run home run by Jade Gortarez in the bottom half of the fifth promptly returned the lead to Louisiana and created what seemed to be an insurmountable 7-3 lead with Summer Ellyson in the circle.
The Cowgirls (3-7) chipped away with a single run in the sixth inning followed by a three-spot in the seventh inning that forged another tie.
Alissa Dalton ended the game with a walk-off RBI single in the Ragin' Cajuns' first at bat of extras, making McNeese pay for a pair of miscues which extended the bottom of the eighth.
Kandra Lamb started in the circle and scattered five hits over her 4-1/3 innings in the circle and surrendered only one earned run. She posted eight strikeouts, a season-high total and her highest mark since her debut season in 2019.
The offense gave Lamb a quick 3-0 lead in the very first at bat with Julie Rawls driving in a pair of runs. A pair of unearned runs scratched by the Cowgirls in the third inning tightened up the contest.
- The Ragin' Cajuns and Cowgirls played extra innings at Lamson Park for the second straight meeting. In 2019, McNeese claimed a 5-4 decision in 11 innings.
- Louisiana reached eight runs for the fifth time in five outings to start the 2021 season.
- Jade Gortarez posted her first home run as a Ragin' Cajun to cap off the scoring in the four-run fifth inning.
- Following the two-run single in the fifth inning, Justice Milz has now collected at least one RBI in each of the past three games.
- Ciara Bryan extended her season-opening, team-best hitting streak to six games. Julie Rawls, Raina O'Neal and Melissa Mayeux each stretched their current hitting streak to four games.
- Kandra Lamb's eight strikeouts were the second-most she's recorded in her collegiate career, trailing only the career-high 11 posted on Feb. 9, 2019 vs. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.
- The victory marked the 10th straight for the Ragin' Cajuns dating back to the 2020 season.
- For the fifth time in six outings Louisiana played an entire game without trailing.
No. 7 Louisiana begins play in a weekend tournament that the program is co-hosting with No. 11 Louisiana State (7-3) on Thursday, Feb. 25, meeting the Tigers in a 6 p.m. contest at Yvette Girouard Field at Lamson Park. The contest will be televised live on ESPN.
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