Louisiana stepped into the next round of the tournament after dominating Texas State last night to face the top team in the league in Coastal Carolina. The Chanticleers jumped out to a 5-0 lead and that would be enough as Coastal Carolina takes down Louisiana 6-3 to advance it the weekend.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
Coastal Carolina got moving in the third inning when Blake Barthol was walked to begin the inning and stole second. Then, Payton Eeles reached on a bunt single to put runners at the corners with nobody out. Barthol and Eeles tried to pull off the double steal, but Louisiana made the play at the plate to keep the run off the board.
The Chanticleers got their first run when Graham Brown got an RBI double to score Eeles and make it 1-0 Coastal in the third. Later in the innings, Derek Bender added two more runs on a double to center field that pushed the lead to 3-0 in favor of the conference’s top seed.
Coastal continued to dominate Carson Fluno, securing their 10th hit when Ty Dooley launched one to right center to make it 6-0. That was the second home run of the game for Coastal and they came via the eighth and ninth hitters in the order.
Louisiana got on the board in the sixth inning by an RBI groundout from Connor Higgs before a Julian Brock got an RBI to make it 6-2.
In the seventh, CJ Willis added another run to Louisiana’s tally to make it 6-3 late in this game.
Louisana tried to push more runners across to advance, but Coastal Carolina was able to pick up the win and advance to the weekend of the conference tournament.
BIG NUMBER: .357
Coastal was 5-14 tonight with runners in scoring position, capitalizing on the opportunity to put runs on the board.
PLAYER OF THE GAME: Derek Bender
Bender had a great night, especially at the night when he hit the two-run homer during the third inning. He finished with two RBIs on two base hits, including a double later in the game.
UP NEXT: Louisiana will return to Riverwalk Stadium to battle Texas State once again in an elimination game. First pitch is set for 6:30 p.m.