The Tigers turned to Carley Hoover in their second game of the Baton Rouge Regional and the staff ace delivered as the Tigers advanced to the Championship game.
After making a relief appearance in Friday’s game, Hoover logged a complete game with eight strikeouts, surrendering five hits, two walks and one earned run picking up her 20th win of the season. While Hoover was generally effective, she did run into trouble on a few occasions. The most notable came in the fourth, when with the bases loaded and one out, Hoover struck out the next two batters to leave the bases full. The lone Cowgirl run came on a solo-home run in the sixth.
On offense, the Tigers didn't enjoy the same success they had a day earlier, but cashed in with runners in scoring position, going 3-of-9 (.333) on the afternoon. Sahvanna Jaquish had a strong performance with three hits and three RBIs, driving in the first three Tiger runs of the afternoon. The combination of Jaquish, Bianka Bell, and Kellsi Kloss went four of eight on the day. The big inning for the Tiger offense came in the sixth after the McNeese home run had made it a 2-1 game. With the bases loaded, Jaquish singled in Emily Griggs and then Kloss added an insurance run with a single to left field to score Bailey Landry.
Two negatives from an otherwise well-played game would be the defense and leaving runners on base. LSU posted two errors in the win, though none led to runs. The Tigers also left 11 runners on base, a rather high total, but one that can perhaps be slightly overlooked considering how well the team hit with runners in scoring position.
Still, the team is playing well entering the title game, and now just needs one more win to advance to the Super Regionals and for a second year in a row LSU will face Arizona State. Perhaps the best thing going for the Tigers is rest, as ASU played 21 innings of softball Saturday with a relatively early, 1PM start coming on Sunday.
LIU Brooklyn one-hit, in elimination
Kelsey Kessler held the Blackbirds to one hit as ASU won 1-0 in the day's first elimination game. Kessler had a perfect game until the first batter of the seventh inning, but induced a double-play and finished the game facing the minimum. For the Blackbirds, Erynn Sobieski was also spectacular going the distance surrendering just one run on five hits and three walks. The lone run came on a walk-off single by Taylor Becerra in the bottom of the seventh.
Sun Devils make it to Sunday
A bases loaded walk by Jennifer Soria gave ASU its second walk-off of the day in a 3-2, 14 inning victory over McNeese St. that ended just after 10pm, sending the Sun Devils to Championship Sunday. Kelsey Kessler got the start for ASU after pitching a complete game earlier in the day and pitched an additional 7.2 innings striking out eight and surrendering two runs. Dale Ryndak provided six innings of scoreless ball. Neither team did particularly well with runners in scoring position with the Cowgirls going 1-11 and the Sun Devils going 1-12.