USM beats ULL in 11 in series finale
LAFAYETTE, La. — Southern Miss had to work long and hard to finally get the best of Louisiana-Lafayette.
Cole Donaldson’s two-run triple in the 11th inning broke a tie score and led Southern Miss to a wild 15-11 victory over the Ragin’ Cajuns in Sunday’s series finale.
Southern Miss scored in five consecutive innings at one point to overcome a 6-0 deficit, and then an 11-8 deficit after it had taken the lead.
Taylor Braley and Matt Wallner both homered for Southern Miss (8-3). Hunter Slater was 2-for-5 with two RBIs and three runs scored, Tracy Hadley had three hits and scored twice, and Storme Cooper was 2-for-4 with two walks, an RBI and three runs scored.
Wallner also pitched 4 2/3 innings of scoreless relief to earn the victory. He allowed two hits and one walk, and struck out seven.
Todd Lott and Ishmael Edwards each had two RBIs and two runs scored for Louisiana-Lafayette (6-4).
A two-run triple by Edwards was part of a five-run rally in the second inning that gave the Cajuns a 6-0 lead.
Southern Miss battled back to eventually take an 8-7 lead in the top of the seventh on Wallner’s two-run home run.
Louisiana-Lafayette came right back to scored four runs in the bottom of the seventh, on a pair of two-run singles by Alex Pinero and Joe Robbins, to make it 11-7.
Robbins finished the game 3-for-6 with two RBIs.
The Golden Eagles had another comeback in them, getting three runs in the eighth inning on a wild pitch, an error and an RBI single by Slater to tie it at 11.
Wallner shut down the Cajuns long enough for the Golden Eagles to regroup again in extra innings, although he did escape a jam in the 10th inning.
ULL moved a runner to third with one out in the 10th. Edwards went down swinging for the second out of the inning after failing to get a squeeze bunt down. In the next at-bat, Lott grounded out to shortstop to end the threat.
LeeMarcus Boyd was hit by a pitch to lead off the 11th inning, and Wallner singled. Donaldson then tripled over the head of right fielder Steven Sensley to bring both runners in.
Donaldson scored on a single by Cooper, who in turn scored on a double by Hadley to make it 15-11.
Wallner gave up a two-out single to Handsome Monica in the bottom of the 11th, but otherwise stayed out of trouble in the final inning and locked down the victory.
“Even though we lost today we still had a 3-1 week,” ULL coach Tony Robichaux said. “It’s something we are going to have to build on. We had a chance to win an ugly game at the end there if we get the squeeze down. It’s tough to sweep a team, but if we play good defense and limit the number of walks we could have come away with this one today.”
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