BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – A five-RBI effort from Karly Heath was the leading catalyst for Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns Softball’s 11-2 (6 inn.) run-rule victory over Indiana on Wednesday, April 20 at Andy Mohr Field, completing the sweep of the Midwest segment of the team’s Spring Break trip.
Heath (2-for-3, double, SF, HR, 5 RBI) started the scoring by launching a three-run homer in the first inning, giving the Ragin’ Cajuns (32-10) a lead they wouldn’t relinquish, and later put up the final tally with an RBI double in the sixth inning. She would register at least one RBI in three of her four plate appearances on the day.
Sam Landry (4.0 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 4 K) and Kandra Lamb (2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 3 K) combined to hold the Hoosiers (23-14) in check the entire afternoon, surrendering only two base hits over 21 batters faced. The lone blemish was a home run in the third inning that put Indiana on the board.
The win was Louisiana’s third in as many days to start off the team’s Spring Break trip, following up Monday’s 19-0 (5 inn.) win at St. Louis and Tuesday’s 4-2 (8 inn.) extra-inning win at Illinois.
The success in Bloomington extended the Ragin’ Cajuns current winning streak to a season-high nine games, a streak that began with Sun Belt sweeps of Troy and South Alabama. Louisiana has now won 17 of its last 20 contests since the March 16 doubleheader vs. Texas at Lamson Park.
The Ragin’ Cajuns are now off to Boone, N.C., to complete their week-long trek where they’ll meet App State (25-18, 7-9 Sun Belt) in a three-game Sun Belt Conference series from Friday-Sunday, April 22-24 at Sywassink/Lloyd Family Stadium.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Beginning with Heath’s home run in their first at bat, the Ragin’ Cajuns plated runs in each of the first four innings, totaling eight runs, to quickly distance themselves from the host-Hoosiers.
Landry held IU hitless until the home run in the third inning from Brooke Benson that trimmed the lead to 6-2. The next half inning Sophie Piskos got the runs back with a two-run home run.
Lamb took over in the fifth inning and proceeded to retire all six batters she faced in closing out the victory for Landry who improved to 14-2 in her collegiate debut campaign.
The Ragin’ Cajuns took advantage of two-out throwing errors from Indiana in the sixth inning to slip in the runs that enforced the run rule and make it a short relief effort for Lamb.
A CLOSER LOOK AT THE BOX SCORE
Heath’s RBI total (5) marked her season-and career-high total and it also allowed her to join the 30-RBI club alongside Stormy Kotzelnick and Jourdyn Campbell. The home run and double pushed her season extra base hits total to 13 (4 doubles, 2 triples, 7 home runs) out of the 20 total hits she’s posted.
Kotzelnick, a native of Carmel, Ind., finished 2-for-4 with a run scored and RBI in her Homecoming stop. She picked up her 15th multiple-hit game of the season and increased her current hitting streak to 10 games (one shy of season-best 11-game streak to start the season).
Piskos collected her sixth home run – first since March 13 vs. Georgia State – and joined Heath in posting a multiple-RBI effort. Her home run was the team’s 49th of the season, moving the squad within one of reaching 50 home runs for the third time in a completed season in the Glasco era.
Landry’s performance followed up five innings of one-hit softball pitched at Illinois. In the two outings combined vs. Big 10 foes, Landry (14-2, 2.10 ERA) worked nine innings and yielded just three hits and two earned runs.
All but one of Louisiana’s nine starters recorded a base hit as the team piled up 12 off of IU pitching for the third consecutive game on the Spring Break trip with double-digit base hits (14 at St. Louis, 10 at Illinois). Three games into the trip and the Ragin’ Cajuns are batting .429 with 34 runs scored off of 36 base hits.
Louisiana returns to Sun Belt Conference play and reaches the final destination of its Spring Break road trip when the team arrives in Boone, N.C. for a weekend series with App State from Friday-Sunday, April 22-24 at Sywassink/Lloyd Family Stadium.
The Ragin’ Cajuns and Mountaineers begin their three-game SBC series on Friday at 4:00 p.m. (CDT). Play continues Saturday at 1:00 p.m. (CDT) and the series finale is set for Sunday at 11:00 a.m. (CDT).
The entire series is being televised live on ESPN+. A radio broadcast with Ian Auzenne is being carried by ESPN Lafayette 103.3 FM and 1420 AM in the Acadiana region and worldwide on the ESPN Lafayette app. Live stats can be accessed at CajunStats.com.
Louisiana makes its first trip to Boone since the 2019 season – which is also the last time the two programs met because of COVID-19 implications. The Ragin’ Cajuns lead the all-time series 11-0 (5-0 in Boone).