Baseball Falls in Heartbreaker in Hammond, 5-4

by (@LSUsports)
Baseball at Southeastern Louisiana - Audio Replay Box Score +0
Baseball Falls in Heartbreaker in Hammond, 5-4

HAMMOND, La. – LSU’s bid for another comeback victory fell just short Wednesday night, as Southeastern Louisiana hung on for a 5-4 win over the Tigers at Alumni Field.

LSU dropped to 5-4 on the year, while Southeastern improved to 6-3. The Tigers return to action at 7 p.m. Friday when they play host to Toledo in Alex Box Stadium, Skip Bertman Field.

Trailing 5-4 entering the top of the ninth, LSU staged a rally against Southeastern reliever Will Warren. Pinch hitter Nick Webre led off with a single, right fielder Daniel Cabrera walked, and designated hitter Austin Bain grounded out to short, advancing the runners to second and third.

Warren intentionally walked centerfielder Antoine Duplantis to load the bases before yielding the mound to right-hander Bryce Tassin. LSU catcher Hunter Feduccia grounded sharply to the right side, but Southeastern second baseman Cody Grosse fielded the ball and started a 4-6-3 double play to end the game and give Tassin his second save of the season.

“Typical of our team, we fought back,” LSU coach Paul Mainieri said. “I told Hunter Feduccia I’d take that situation 100 times again this year; him up with the bases loaded down by one in the ninth inning.

“It was just a little bit too much to overcome. But I’m proud of our guys, I thought they played really hard and really well. It was a good learning experience for us tonight.”

Southeastern starter Carlisle Koestler (2-0) earned the win for the Lions, allowing just one run on five hits in seven innings with two walks and six strikeouts.

LSU right-hander Todd Peterson (0-3), the second of seven Tiger pitchers, was charged with the loss as he surrendered three runs on four hits in two innings with no walks and one strikeout.

Feduccia enjoyed a brilliant defensive effort from behind the plate, throwing out three Southeastern runners attempting to steal.

Southeastern struck for three runs in the third inning against Peterson to take a 3-0 lead. Rightfielder Mike Taylor delivered an RBI single and centerfielder Drew Avans launched a two-run homer – his first of the season – to account for the scoring.

The Lions increased the lead to 5-0 in the fifth against reliever Trent Vietmeier when Avans belted a two-run double.

LSU’s final four relievers – Taylor Petersen, Devin Fontenot, Matthew Beck and Austin Bain – combined to blank Southeastern over three innings, giving the Tigers a chance to get back into the game.

Cabrera’s sacrfice fly in the eighth against Koestler narrowed the gap to 5-1 before a three-run homer by third baseman Jake Slaughter – his first dinger of the season – in the eighth inning reduced the deficit to one run.