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LSU defeats South Alabama, 9-4

AJ Labas impresses in extended outing.

LSU improved to an overall record of 12-6 when it topped South Alabama in Baton Rouge, 9-4 on Wednesday.

The Tigers have shown a tendency to get things started early in the first inning all season long, and this matchup proved to be no exception. Feduccia again showed himself to be an integral part of the team’s offense with a bases-loaded single that scored two runners. This made for the seventh game in a row the team has scored in the opening inning.

The next LSU run would not come until the fourth inning, when Hal Hughes scored Bryce Jordan. But it was in the fifth that the Tigers’ offense truly reawakened, putting 4 runs on the scoreboard. Beau Jordan and Chris Reid both drove in runs with RBI walks. Zach Watson accounted for a two-run single to follow on his first hit of the night.

In the seventh inning, right fielder Antoine Duplantis recorded the 200th hit of his college career. If he can manage to rack up at least 72 more, the junior will find a place in the top 10 in school history.

For pitching, freshman RHP AJ Labas showed Ma’Khail Hilliard isn’t the only young pitcher to be impressed with on the team. Over six shutout innings, Labas threw 53 strikes on 76 pitches.

With this performance, Labas has kicked off his LSU career with 11 consecutive shutout innings.

“I thought I was going to at least get through 5 [innings],” Labas said. “But I’m just happy the way I pitched and stuff to get through 6 innings. We threw a lot of changeups tonight because right now my slider is not my out pitch...So we’ve had to rely on my changeup a lot more. We threw fastballs and changeups tonight and that’s what my success was.”

It was only after Labas left the game that the Jaguars were able to get anything going against the LSU bullpen, which gave up four runs on six hits in addition to four walks.

The Jags appeared to have hopes of tying the game in the eighth, but those hopes were quickly dashed as Matthew Beck struck out two batters consecutively preceding a scoreless final inning.

The Tigers will return to action when they take on Missouri in The Box at 6:30 p.m. CT on Friday to open SEC play.