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Softball: Sunday Sweep Stretches Louisiana’s Win Streak to Four Games
2/25/2020 | 4:30 p.m.
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns Softball took control early leaving little doubt in an 8-1 win over Ole Miss, then battled back late for a 7-4 win over UAB on the final day of the Blazer Classic at Mary Bowers Field.
The sweep extended the 9th-ranked Ragin' Cajuns winning streak to four games and improved the squad's mark to 11-3 heading into showdowns with Top 10 foes Texas and Florida next week.
Three doubles in the first inning, the latter from Sarah Hudek plating two runs, staked Louisiana out to a 3-0 lead against Ole Miss (5-10) before the Rebels even stepped to the plate.
The Ragin' Cajuns kept the pressure on in the second inning as Kaitlyn Alderink stole home and Hudek delivered her third RBI to stretch the lead to 5-0.
That was ample support for Summer Ellyson who turned in another dominant performance, not allowing a base hit to the Rebels until the fourth inning. She yielded just one run and three hits over seven innings, faced just three over the minimum, and struck out five.
The tournament finale with the host-Blazers (8-7) saw the lead swap hands three times before the Ragin' Cajuns secured the victory.
The teams exchanged unearned runs early, with UAB picking one up in the first inning and the Ragin' Cajuns grabbing a pair in the third inning to take a 2-1 lead.
Melissa Mayeux doubled to start off the fifth inning and later scored on an RBI single from Alderink increasing the Louisiana advantage to 3-1. The Blazers wouldn't go away, though, as their first three batters in the bottom half of the inning all reached base, setting the stage for three runs which gave the hosts a 4-3 lead.
The Ragin' Cajuns answered immediately in the top half of the sixth inning. Julie Rawls tripled into the right field corner to score Raina O'Neal, who led off with a single, and even the score. On the next at bat, Taylor Roman delivered a pinch-hit RBI single to give Louisiana the lead for good.
Hudek punctuated her solid day at the plate, and provided extra run support, with a two-run home run in the seventh inning which extended the lead to 7-4. Ellyson, who relieved Megan Kleist in the fifth inning, retired the Blazers in order to wrap up a one-hit relief effort that spanned 2-2/3 innings.
- Louisiana moved to 4-2 on its current 11-game road trip which began last Sunday at Louisiana State.
- The Ragin' Cajuns completed a weekend sweep of Ole Miss, games which were a rematch on the 2019 NCAA Oxford Regional finals.
- The matchup with UAB marked the first-ever meeting at Mary Bowers Field, and only the second one between the two programs (lone prior meeting came Feb. 2016 in Foley, Ala.).
- With six RBI on the day, Sarah Hudek joined Julie Rawls as Ragin' Cajuns with double-digit RBI this young season. Hudek increased her season output to 10 RBI.
- Summer Ellyson completed the UAB Blazer Classic with three wins and one save. The senior All-American pitcher worked 19 innings in the circle and surrendered just three runs and nine hits.
- The come-from-behind win over UAB marked the second time in as many days that Louisiana rallied for a win in the fifth inning or later. On Saturday, the Ragin' Cajuns used a three-spot in the fifth inning to erase a 3-1 deficit against Ole Miss.
No. 9 Louisiana departs on Monday, Feb. 24 for a week-long trip which features five contests all against Top 10 nationally ranked squads.
The first stop is Austin, Texas, for a Mardi Gras day doubleheader at No. 2 Texas on Tuesday, Feb. 25. Action begins at 4:30 p.m. live on the Longhorn Network.
Following the twinbill with the Longhorns, the squad makes its way to Gainesville, Fla., for a three-game weekend series with No. 7 Florida scheduled for Friday-Sunday, Feb. 28-March 1 at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium. The series will be broadcast on SEC Network Plus.
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