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Athletics: �It�s a good time to be a fan�

Katie de la Rosa, The Advertiser, May 25, 2014

With the University of Louisiana at Lafayette baseball team winning the Sun Belt Conference tournament and the softball team advancing to the Women’s College World Series over the weekend, local gathering spots were abuzz with spirited fans excited about their school’s success and hopeful about its future.

“We’ve got a good shot to go all the way!” exclaimed Shane Broussard, wearing red and eating hot wings at Buffalo Wild Wings in south Lafayette.

Broussard, a St. Martinville native, said he supports the Cajuns because his wife graduated from there and his children will attend UL.

“It’s a good time to be a fan,” he said.

Right after the Cajuns threw their gloves in the air to celebrate beating the University of Texas Arlington Mavericks, 6-5, to clinch the conference championship tournament Sunday, Nicholas Albarado pumped his fist and said, “Hell, yeah.”

“It was awesome,” Albarado said about the game at Legends Sports Bar on Verot School Road. “We’re the Sun Belt champs!”

On the front patio, Claudette Moore of Broussard said she and her family decided to eat there “specifically to watch the game.”

“We’re so thrilled and so proud,” Moore said. “I just know we’re going to go all the way.”

Moore said she is rooting for the softball and baseball teams, but she does not follow most sports year round.

“Just UL, baby,” she said. “My shiztu and chihuahua wear red UL sweaters.”

Behind catcher Lexie Elkins’ 21st and 22nd home runs of the year Saturday, UL defeated the Arizona Wildcats, 7-1, sweeping the Super Regional and advancing to the Women’s College World Series in Oklahoma City, Thursday through June 4, the team’s sixth visit in school history.

“I like their chances very much,” said Claudette Moore’s son, Adam Moore, eating a wrap on the Legends patio.

Adam Moore said he is a fan of all UL teams, but his particular favorite is baseball, and he has been “to around five or six” games at M.L. “Tigue” Moore Field this season. He said his favorite player is leftfielder Caleb Adams, whom he called “clutch.” He might be right, as Adams had four RBI and seven hits, including a triple in the championship win, at the Sun Belt Conference tournament, which UL won for the first time since 1998.

“Adam likes him because his name Adams,” Claudette Moore said, laughing.

The NCAA will announce the rankings Monday morning, and it is possible both the Cajuns and the neighboring LSU Tigers will be national seeds — meaning a match-up between the in-state rivals would not take place unless they both advance to the College World Series in Omaha, Neb. To do that, though, they will have to win their Regional and Super Regional rounds, and UL alumnus David Domingues said he believes that will happen.

“At this point, we could beat anyone in college baseball,” Domingues said, wearing a red UL shirt.

Clinching a College World Series berth would be the Cajuns’ first since 2000 — when they finished as the third best in the U.S. — and Domingues said he is confident UL will make it happen. LSU might, too, he said, but he is only a fan of the Tigers “when they’re not playing my Cajuns.”

Adam Moore said he does not care how the Tigers fare in the upcoming rounds, and he said he will try to attend this weekend’s Regional and the Super Regional UL could potentially host.

“I always support my team,” he said.