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Softball: UL softball earns No. 6 overall seed – hosts Lafayette Regional – Texas, MSU, Tex. South.

The Advertiser, May 12, 2014


UL softball players and fans react as they find out that UL will host a regional NCAA softball Sunday night during the ESPNU NCAA Selection Show. The tournament will begin this Friday at Lamson Park in Lafayette.(Photo11: Leslie Westbrook, The Advertiser)

After traveling to Tempe, Ariz. and Ann Arbor, Mich., over the past two seasons in Super Regional play, the UL Ragin’ Cajuns found out Sunday during the NCAA Selection Show that no such trips will be necessary this time around.

If the Cajuns can keep winning, the only destination outside of Lamson Park will be Oklahoma City, Okla.

The Cajuns were awarded the No. 6 overall national seed on Sunday as the Sun Belt regular season and tournament champions and will begin play in Friday’s NCAA Lafayette Regional against Texas Southern at 6 p.m.

The Lafayette Regional also includes Texas and Mississippi State.

Going a bit farther into the bracket, the Lafayette Regional winner would meet the Phoenix Regional winner, which most would expect to be Arizona or LSU.

"I look at some of those regionals and some of the teams got cakewalks," Lotief said. "We did not get a cakewalk. Our road is going to be tough. If we’re going to do this, it’s going to take the ‘A’ game from everybody involved."

UL will meet Texas Southern at 6 p.m. Friday on ESPN3, after the 2 p.m. contest between Texas (33-21) and Mississippi State. This will be the second trip to Lamson Park this season for Texas, which defeated the Cajuns 10-7 and 7-3 in the season-opening Louisiana Classics.

"We played Texas twice and they beat us twice, so go no further," Lotief said. "It’s going to be tough.

"But we are very excited to be playing at home and for our fans to be here."

This will be Texas Southern’s first trip to NCAA Regional play after defeating Mississippi Valley State 6-3 in the SWAC finals in Decator, Ala., on Sunday afternoon.

Mississippi State (38-19), meanwhile, is one of 11 teams from the SEC in the regional field. The Bulldogs were eliminated in the opening round of the SEC Tournament 4-3 in 9 innings by Kentucky.

UL senior leftfielder Shelbi Redfearn said he had no preconceived notions on which teams would be sent to Lafayette.

"I really didn’t keep up with the predictions, so I really didn’t have an idea," Redfearn said. "I just love the fact that we’re the No. 6 seed and that we’re playing at home."

True to form of a senior leader, Redfearn wasn’t very interesting in discussing Texas or Mississippi State.

"All of our focus right now is on Texas Southern," Redfear"n said. "None of that other stuff matters to me right now."

Likewise, senior second baseman Natalie Fernandez didn’t begin the evening with any big preductions.

"I had a few ideas, but you never really know at this point," Fernandez said. "We just have to stay confident and continue getting better.

"We have to trust in our preparation and keep trusting in the process. Our focus needs to be on Texas Southern on Friday."


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