Errors costly in Cajuns; 13-5 loss to Chanticleers
LAFAYETTE – No. 6-ranked Coastal Carolina took advantage of a third-inning error to plate four runs before pulling away from a 5-4 lead with a seven-run, seventh inning to claim a 13-5 win over the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns in the second game of a Sun Belt Conference series on Saturday at M.L. “Tigue” Moore Field at Russo Park.
The rubber game of the three-game series is scheduled for Sunday at 10 a.m. The game will be streamed live on ESPN+ with fans able to listen to the game in the Lafayette area on KPEL-FM (96.5) and worldwide on the Varsity Network app.
Coastal Carolina (27-14, 14-6 SBC) trailed 1-0 after two innings before taking the lead for good in the third. Ty Dooley led off the inning when he drew a walk from Louisiana starting pitcher Jackson Nezuh (6-4) before a potential double play grounder went between the legs of second baseman John Taylor for an error.
The Chanticleers then loaded the bases when Payton Eeles reached on a bunt single before Dooley would tie the game when he scored on a wild pitch. Graham Brown then followed with an opposite-field double into the right-field corner, scoring Blake Barthol and Eeles before giving the Chanticleers a 4-1 lead when he scored on Derek Bender’s sacrifice fly.
Louisiana (29-16, 11-9 SBC) took a 1-0 lead in the first inning as Ben Robichaux was hit by a pitch before Kyle Debarge reached on an infield single. Heath Hood then lifted a double down the left-field line for the Ragin’ Cajuns, but the Chanticleer defense would hold getting a line out, force out at the plate and strike out to end the inning.
The Ragin’ Cajuns cut into a 5-1 lead in the fourth on Will Veillon’s solo home run to left before Julian Brock hit a two-run blast to left to get Louisiana to within 5-4.
Coastal, who capitalized on five walks and five hit batters, put the game away in the seventh with a pair of home runs, beginning with Barthol’s leadoff homer to left. Eeles was hit by a pitch and moved to second on a wild pitch. Two batters later, Caden Bodine singled through the left side to drive in Eeles before Bender was hit by a pitch and Nick Lucky cleared the bases with a grand slam to center.
Barthol went 2-for-3 with four RBI for the Chanticleers with Chad Born recording two of his team’s nine hits in the game. Morrison pitched 5.0 innings and allowed four runs on six hits before Darin Horn pitched a scoreless sixth inning with Liam Doyle allowing four hits with four strikeouts over the final 3.0 innings to earn his first save.
Nezuh scattered four hits and fanned four batters in 4.0 innings for Louisiana. DeBarge, Hood and Higgs had two hits each for Louisiana.
Louisiana will send right-hander David Christie (1-0, 3.93 ERA) to the mound in Sunday’s finale with Coastal Carolina expected to start right-hander Riley Eikhoff (0-1, 6.48 ERA).
Single-game tickets are available by visiting the Louisiana Athletics Box Office at the Cajundome or purchasing by visiting Account Manager. For more information call the Louisiana Athletics Box Office at the Cajundome at (337) 265-2104.
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