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Baseball: Arkansas State Outlasts Louisiana 16-11
LAFAYETTE - Louisiana Baseball's eight-game winning streak came to an end in its most prolific offensive display of the season, falling to Arkansas State, 16-11, at M.L. 'Tigue' Moore Field at Russo Park on Sunday afternoon.
Louisiana (20-12, 7-2 SBC) blasted seven home runs in the contest, the most since March 16, 2014.
The Ragin' Cajuns were led by Connor Kimple and Ben Fitzgerald at the plate on the day. Kimple went 5-for-6 and posted the 26th five-hit game in school history and the first since Hayden Cantrelle tallied five hits on May 11, 2018. Fitzgerald added two bombs in the contest, which included five RBI and 11 total bases. His 11 total bases are the most since Hayden Cantrelle at Little Rock on March 16, 2019.
The long ball highlighted the fourth inning as the Ragin' Cajuns smashed four solo home runs, coming from CJ Willis, Kimple, Fitzgerald and Tyler Robertson. Kimple, Fitzgerald and Robertson went back-to-back-to-back and are the first trio to accomplish that since April 13, 2001.
To start the game, Arkansas State (9-16, 4-5 SBC) tagged Chipper Menard for three runs in the top of the first inning on a two-out double with the bases loaded.
Louisiana then exploded for a four-run fourth inning, all on solo home runs from Willis, Kimple, Fitzgerald and Robertson, putting the game at 4-3.
Hayden Durke was solid in relief on Sunday until he was charged with three runs in the top of the fifth, which made the game 6-4 in favor of Arkansas State.
Down 7-4 in the bottom of the sixth inning, Fitzgerald connected for his second home run of the game, a three-run blast to right field. Fitzgerald's bomb tied the game at 7-7 and it was his ninth of the year.
Every time the Ragin' Cajuns put up runs, however, Arkansas State would respond. The Red Wolves scored four in the top of the seventh inning, three of which came on an inside-the-park home run from Tyler Duncan, giving the Red Wolves an 11-7 lead.
Nick Hagedorn, who was 3-for-5 on the day, smashed a solo home run in the bottom of the seventh. Carson Roccaforte also added a solo shot in the seventh inning, his third of the year.
Arkansas State was able to gather five runs in the last two frame, three of which came off a three-run blast from Jake Gish, giving it a 16-9 heading into the bottom of the ninth.
The Ragin' Cajuns tried to mount a comeback but were unsuccessful as they picked up two runs before losing 16-11.
Louisiana does not have a midweek game this week and will continue Sun Belt Play at South Alabama on Friday.
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