LSU Gold

No. 4 LSU Pull Out Nail-Biters to Remain Unbeaten

The LSU pitching staff finished the day with a 0.50 ERA with 15 strikeouts in 14.0 innings, allowing just one run and one walk, holding the opposing batters to a .133 average. The Tigers are the lone undefeated team in the nation.

Tournament Home Box Score vs. McNeese Box Score vs. Louisiana Tech +0
No. 4 LSU Pull Out Nail-Biters to Remain Unbeaten

BATON ROUGE, La. – No. 4/5 LSU won two games by three combined runs to close out the Purple & Gold Challenge Sunday at Tiger Park.

LSU improves to 19-0 after defeating McNeese (12-8), 2-1 for the second consecutive day and shutout Louisiana Tech (12-4), 2-0 for the Tigers’ eighth shutout of the season. 

The LSU pitching staff finished the day with a 0.50 ERA with 15 strikeouts in 14.0 innings, allowing just one run and one walk, holding the opposing batters to a .133 average. 

Pitchers Sydney Berzon and Kelly Lynch each threw a complete game, and Lynch posted her second shutout of the season in the win versus Louisiana Tech.   

“Kelley [Lynch] was great all weekend,” said Head Coach Beth Torina. “I thought she threw a gem of a game yesterday and then came up with a big hit. That is why we wanted her here, so she could make a big difference and give us the depth to do big things. The lights shine bright, and she continues to perform. I am very proud we had her bat going this weekend, and I think she was incredible overall.”

Shortstop Taylor Pleasants and first baseman Raeleen Gutierrez led the LSU offense with three hits on six at-bats (.500), and both turned in an RBI. Outfielder Ciara Briggs added two hits and one run scored, and catcher Maci Bergeron had a team-high two RBIs on the day.

“Our offense has been truly unstoppable, so I believe there will be moments in games where we are not firing on all cylinders,” said coach Torina. “Not having Danieca [Coffey] in the lineup will take a bit of adjusting for everyone, along with having two freshmen out there. We will have to return to the drawing board to work on our offense, but continuously finding ways to win is important for this team in every way.”

Game One

Berzon (6-0) threw a complete game, fanning eight batters with no walks while giving up four hits and one run on 75 pitches.

McNeese pitcher Shaelyn Sanders (4-4) suffered the loss after allowing five hits, two runs, and walking three batters in 6.0 innings. 

Berzon threw shutout softball in the opening four innings and retired the first 13 batters she faced with four strikeouts before giving up an RBI single from pinch hitter Jada Munoz in the top of the fifth inning.  

The Tigers’ offense answered in the bottom half-inning, featuring Briggs and outfielder Ali Newland base knocks. Pleasants and Gutierrez then lined run-scoring singles to give LSU a 2-1 lead after five frames.   

LSU’s defense shut down McNeese in the final two innings, including Berzon’s three strikeouts against the final seven batters she faced and a 1-6-3 double play to end the game.

Game Two

Lynch (3-0) moved to 3-0 this season after blanking Louisiana Tech in 7.0 innings of work. Lynch tallied a season-high seven strikeouts and allowed two hits and one walk.

LA Tech’s Brook Melnychuk (5-3) is charged with the loss and allowed two runs on five hits with three strikeouts and a walk in 5.1 innings.

After allowing a hit in the second inning, Lynch retired 13 consecutive batters, including striking out the side in the third inning.

Pleasants and Gutierrez led the team at the plate, going 2-for-3, including back-to-back singles in the sixth to set up a game-winning two-RBI single by Bergeron.  

The defense finished the job in the seventh with a double play and Lynch’s seventh punchout. 

Up Next

LSU opens SEC play with a three-game series at Kentucky March 8-10 at John Cropp Stadium in Lexington, Ky.

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