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Baseball: Plitt delivers big for Cajuns – Rise And Grind – Lineup Alterations – Awards Watch – Lagni

Tim Buckley, The Advertiser, May 24, 2014

A few days ago, it hurt UL pitcher Matt Plitt to walk.

The Ragin’ Cajuns reliever took a line drive off an ankle in UL’s Sun Belt Conference Tournament-opening win over UL Monroe last Wednesday, and a day later he was quite sore.

On Thursday, Cajuns coach Tony Robichaux said Plitt’s status for this weekend was uncertain.

But the senior was Texas City, Texas, was back on the mound Saturday, pitching the final 1.2 innings for the save in a 4-3 win over Texas State that put the No. 2-ranked Cajuns into Sunday’s 1 p.m. title game.

"That was huge for us to be able to use him," said Robichaux, who credited team trainer Brian Davis for getting Plitt good to go.

"They aggressively took that thing," he added, "and treated it and treated it and treated it."

Plitt said adrenaline helped to keep the ankle from bothering him much Wednesday, but by Thursday he was feeling it.

And the feeling wasn’t pleasant.

"That day it was pretty bad," he said, "but (Friday) we treated it all day and (Saturday) it felt really good."

Plitt got UL out of a jam in the eighth with one pitch that produced a double play, and he held Texas State scoreless in the bottom of the ninth.


UL will start junior righty Greg Milhorn (5-2, 6.62 ERA) in today’s championship game against Texas-Arlington.

Milhorn began 2014 as UL’s Sunday starter, missed about a month (oblique strain) and had a couple of strong bullpen starts after returning, but has struggled since then.

The ex-Arkansas pitcher played in all three UL games vs. UTA last month.

He threw 3.0 innings in three relief appearances, closing twice (with one save) in the first two games (both wins) while allowing two hits and run. But in the last game, a 5-4 loss, Milhorn allowed two hits and was charged for four runs while not recording an out.

He also had a hard time in his most-recent outing, a start in a regular season-ending series last weekend vs. UL Monroe.


The Cajuns had a 6 a.m. wake-up call for Saturday’s 9 a.m. game. Batting practice was 7:30 a.m.

"It was rise-and-grind," Robichaux said, "they grinded it out."

For some from UL, getting up was no big deal.

Plitt, for instance, grew accustomed to early morning travel when playing juco ball at Galveston (Texas) College.

"It wasn’t too bad," he said.

Others, however, needed a good shake in the morning.

"I had so many people call me and tell me they were going to wake me up," said starting pitcher Cody Boutte, who had his eyelids just open enough to allow only five hits and two runs over his 7.0 innings.


Centerfielder Seth Harrison was back in the starting lineup for UL on Saturday, one game after he was pulled after one inning for missing a sign in his first at-bat vs. Texas State.

He went 0-for-5 Saturday.

UL’s Tyler Girouard returned to his usual DH spot Saturday, and Kyle Clement – a reserve for most of the season – made a third straight tourney start over Dylan Butler in right field. Greg Davis was UL’s DH on Thursday.

Girouard also went 0-for-5 Saturday, and Clement was 1-for-4 with one run scored.


UL’s Carson Baranik is one of 18 who remain on the latest watch list for the Collegiate Baseball Hall of Fame’s Pitcher of the Year award, and teammate Blake Trahan is one of 16 who remain on the latest watch list for the Hall of Fame’s Brooks Wallace Award, which goes to college baseball’s top shortstop.


Trahan’s two triples Saturday tie a Sun Belt tourney record for most in a game, set multiple times previously. … UL first baseman Chase Compton was hit by a pitch Saturday. He’s been hit a team-high 20 times this season. … Compton, who had what proved to be a game-winning RBI double, extended his streak of consecutive games reaching base to 22. … Announced attendance Saturday: 513. That’s the first time in three UL tourney games it’s been over 500. … Cajun third baseman Ryan Leonards’ 13-game hit streak came to a close with a 0-for-2 day. … UL tied the Sun Belt record for most wins in a season with the 52, equaling the 1986 count of South Florida.