UL-Lafayette hands No. 1 LSU its second non-conference loss, 8-5

LSU third baseman Tommy White led the No. 1 Tigers with four hits in the loss to ULL on Tuesday night. PHOTO by JONATHAN MAILHES

UL Lafayette reliever David Christie pitched a career-high six innings Tuesday night, and the Cajuns launched a pair of two-run homers to defeat No. 1 LSU, 8-5, in Alex Box Stadium, Skip Bertman Field.

LSU (29-7), which lost its first midweek game of the season, opens a three-game SEC series versus Ole Miss in Oxford, Miss., at 6:30 p.m. CT Friday. The game will be broadcast on affiliates of the LSU Sports Radio Network, and it will be streamed on SEC Network +.

Christie (1-0) limited LSU to one run on three hits, walked four and struck out one. LSU reliever Riley Cooper (1-2) was charged with the loss, allowing four runs on six hits in 3.1 innings with two walks and two strikeouts.

A two-run homer by centerfielder Heath Hood in the third inning, and a two-run blast by left fielder Conor Higgs in the seventh, highlighted the Cajuns’ offensive output.

The Cajuns (26-12) also benefited from two LSU errors and two misplayed fly balls by the Tigers’ outfield.

“UL Lafayette has a very good team, and they produced a lot of baserunners and created a lot of traffic,” said LSU coach Jay Johnson. “Christie did a great job for them on the mound; he got out there and executed, and we couldn’t quite get on the barrel against him and get the offensive momentum going.”

LSU left-hander Javen Coleman started the game on the mound, making his first appearance in over a year after undergoing Tommy John surgery in March 2022. He retired the side in the first and recorded two strikeouts in his one inning of work.

“It’s really awesome to see for Javen,” Johnson said. “I know the work that he’s put into his recovery, and it obviously a great development for our team. I’ve never seen someone return that quickly and return in that type of form. I’m happy for him and happy for our team to have him available.”

LSU grabbed a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning on designated hitter Cade Beloso’s RBI triple, but the Cajuns responded with two runs in the second on catcher Clay Wargo’s RBI suicide squeeze bunt and a run-scoring single by right fielder Will Veillon.

The Tigers tied the game in the bottom of the second when second baseman Jack Merrifield provided an RBI groundout.

Hood’s two-run homer in the third gave the Cajuns a 4-2 lead, and LSU first baseman Jared Jones’ sacrifice fly in the bottom of the frame narrowed the deficit to one run.

The Cajuns took advantage of two misplayed fly balls in the fourth to expand their lead to 6-3, and Higgs’ homer in the seventh increased the advantage to 8-3.

LSU left fielder Tre’ Morgan unloaded a two-run dinger – his third homer of the season – in the ninth inning to reduce the margin to 8-5.

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Tiger Rag News Services

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