The Tigers got off to another hot start on Sunday, looking to sweep the Bryant Bulldogs and keep their record perfect on the young season. Lead off back-to-back singles and a sacrifice by Antoine Duplantis put 2 in scoring position immediately. Bryant gave Daniel Cabrera the intentional free pass to load the bases and Saul Garza made them pay for it with a sac fly into the driving wind in center to score 1. Gavin Dugas followed that up with an RBI single to left center, but he tried to stretch it into a double and was easily thrown out.
The game then progressed at a pretty quick clip as the wind blowing in from center to right killed a lot of balls in the air. Bryant figured out early that it was a day for the ground game. In the 4th inning, Jimmy Titus got on with a walk, stole second, moved to 3rd on a ground ball out, then came home a double into left by Sam Owens. LSU answered with a score in the bottom of the inning as Bryant turned a double play attempt on a ground ball by Brock Mathis into a throw towards the LSU dugout, scoring Dugas from 2nd. LSU started the top of the 6th with Matthew Beck on the mound, and Bryant used 2 more stolen bases, a passed ball, and RBI singles from Owens and Gaby Cruz to even the score at 3-3. Coach Mainieri pulled Beck after the .2 IP outing for Aaron George who would strike out 3 while facing the minimum in 1.1 IP of work, enough to earn the win.
The game remained tied until the bottom of the 7th. With 2 outs, Zach Watson got on with a ground ball single into center. With Antoine Duplantis at the plate, Watson stole second, then came home on a line drive into the right corner, avoiding a tag at the plate. With a 1 run lead, Todd Peterson took over for the save. He only struck out one and allowed 2 hits, but that was enough to keep Bryant off the board and secure the sweep.
LSU Starting pitcher Jaden Hill had a good outing, but only went 5.0 IP and threw 85 pitches. He held Bryant to 1 run on 2 hits and was aided by 6 outs on pop fly balls in the blowing wind. More concerning in the battery was the tough day Brock Mathis had catching, as Bryant stole 6 bases and advanced on 2 passed balls.
LSU has two midweek games against South Alabama and Southern before heading out on the season’s first road trip, a weekend in Austin, Texas against the #23 6-2 Texas Longhorns.