LSU erupted for 11 runs in the first three innings and mashed its way to a 17-8 win over Bryant on Saturday night at Alex Box Stadium.
The game moved at as glacial pace as Bryant pitching issued 10 walks and the Bulldog defense committed five errors. Those mistakes poured gasoline on the offensive fire as seven of LSU’s 17 runs were unearned.
Antoine Duplantis led the all-out assault by going 3-for-5 with six RBI and four runs scored. The senior right fielder set a new career-high with his third home run of the season, a three-run blast to right in the third inning.
Brock Mathis, who entered the game hitting .118, homered to begin a four-run second inning. Designated hitter Saul Garza singled home a run later in that inning as part of a three-RBI night.
“Everybody is contributing,” Duplantis said. “It’s great moving forward for your confidence as an offense to see everybody clicking.”
LSU coach Paul Mainieri moved Zach Watson into the two hole in an attempt to jump start his season, and the move paid immediate dividends.
“I thought he played great,” Mainieri said. “It was just kind of sending him a message that I believe in him and don’t get down on yourself.”
Watson reached base safely and scored a run in each of his three plate appearances before being lifted as LSU emptied the bench. Watson also drove in a run with a double to finish 2-for-2 after posting a .150 batting average (3-for-20) through the first five games.
LSU hitting coach Sean Ochinko and Watson made a slight adjustment to his swing that helped, the junior said. He started with his hands further back in his stance.
“Everybody is hitting,” Watson said. “Just go out there every day and hit. We seem to be doing a lot of hitting, so it’s awesome.”
The offensive onslaught allowed Landon Marceaux to cruise to his second win in as many starts despite enduring a relatively rocky outing.
Marceaux allowed a solo home run in the second inning and got tagged for four runs in the fourth inning after LSU blew the game open.
Mainieri chose to focus on the way Marceaux rebounded after the first bad inning of his career. He retired the final seven batters he faced to finish strong having allowed five runs on five hits over 5.2 innings with four strikeouts.
“I was really proud of Landon Marceaux,” Mainieri said. “He was so mad after he gave up those four runs. Then he went out there in the fifth inning and pitches a beautiful inning … I’m just so proud of Landon. That shows that he has that something extra that you look for.”
LSU will go for the sweep on Sunday afternoon with Jaden Hill on the mound. First pitch is set for 2 p.m.
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