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No. 12 LSU Tops Georgia Tech, 12-8, to Open Clearwater Invitational

Raeleen Gutierrez posted a 3-for-4 performance, all extra-base hits, including her third home run of the season.

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No. 12 LSU Tops Georgia Tech, 12-8, to Open Clearwater Invitational

CLEARWATER, Fla. – Raeleen Gutierrez was a single shy of completing the cycle as she led No. 12 LSU (6-0) past Georgia Tech (3-5), 12-8 Thursday afternoon on day one of the 2024 Shriners Children’s Clearwater Invitational at the Eddie C. Moore Complex.

LSU scored 10 unanswered runs after falling behind by two runs and totaled 12 hits in the win. Four Tigers finished with multiple hits, including Gutierrez, who was 3-for-4, all extra-base hits, including her third home run of the season. Gutierrez also scored three runs and had two RBIs.

Karli Petty also went 3-for-4 at the plate with two RBIs and one run scored. Taylor Pleasants went 2-for-3 in the batter’s box and had a team-high four RBIs, while Hannah Carson also had two hits and one RBI in the game.   

Raelin Chaffin improved to 2-0 in the circle after tossing five strikeouts, allowing eight runs on 10 hits and five walks in 6.2 innings of work.                                                    

Georgia Tech pitcher Kinsey Norton (0-1) started the game but got pulled in the third inning. Norton was credited with the loss after giving up four runs, three hits, and three walks in 2.0 innings.

Georgia Tech crossed a pair of unearned runs in the first inning, but LSU wasted no time getting those runs back and then some in the top of the second inning. After a leadoff walk by Newland, Gutierrez roped a triple to right center to bring home the Tigers’ first run of the game, and two batters later, LSU took a 3-2 lead behind consecutive RBI singles from Carson and Petty, respectively. 

The Tigers added to their margin with one run in the third and fourth innings with an RBI walk from Lynch in the third and an RBI single by Pleasants in the fourth to stretch LSU’s lead to 5-2 through four frames.

LSU put up four runs in the fifth inning to blow the game open. Gutierrez led off the half inning with a double, and McKenzie Redoutey followed with a shot to left field. Later in the inning, Pleasants drove two more runs across to balloon the Tigers’ lead to 9-2. 

The Bayou Bengals got back on the board in the top of the sixth thanks to an RBI single by Petty, pushing the lead to 10-2, but the Yellow Jackets responded with two runs in the bottom half. 

LSU matched GT’s two runs in the top of the seventh with a sac fly from Pleasants and a home run from Gutierrez. Georgia Tech pieced together one more late rally attempt by scoring four runs with two outs in the bottom of the seventh, pulling within four runs. However, the Tigers ended the threat with a fly out to left field to end the game, 12-8.

Up Next

No. 12 LSU will continue the Clearwater Invitational with a bout against No. 22 Northwestern at 11 a.m. CT on Friday, Feb. 16, at the Eddie C. Moore Complex. 

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