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LSU Tigers use late offensive explosion to take game one

BATON ROUGE —LSU overcame a shaky defensive start to the NCAA Baseball Regional to score 10-unanswered runs and defeat Texas Southern, 15-7, on Friday afternoon at Alex Box Stadium, Skip Bertman Field.

The Tigers (44-17) committed five fielding errors, which led to six unearned runs in the first five innings and wound up trailing Texas Southern (20-33), 7-5, following the top of the fifth inning.

LSU then found its bats and scored four runs in the fifth, four in the seventh and two in the eighth to come away with a win.

Texas Southern pulled out to a 2-0 lead in the opening frame when LSU starter Jared Poche’ loaded the bases with two singles and walk before recording an out. The visiting Tigers’ first run came on an RBI single by Christian Sanchez off third baseman Josh Smith’s glove. The ball deflected to LSU shortstop Kramer Robertson, who threw to an uncovered first base. The error charged to LSU first baseman Nick Coomes allowed a second run to score.

Texas Southern extended its advantage to 3-0 in the top of the second inning, again by virtue of an LSU error. Smith’s two-out throwing error allowed Kamren Dukes to reach second, and Dukes came around to score on a single by Jose Camacho that gave TSU a 3-0 lead.

LSU came back with four runs in the bottom of the second, as Coomes walked and Smith was hit by a pitch. Michael Papierski put LSU on the scoreboard with an RBI single through the left side, and Zach Watson cleared the bases with a three-run home run to left that put LSU ahead, 4-3.

LSU took advantage of a misplayed fly ball that was ruled a triple to center field for Cole Freeman. A one-out single by Greg Deichmann pushed the LSU’s advantage to 5-3.

Both LSU and Texas Southern scored four runs in their respective ends of the fifth inning.

LSU committed a pair of errors in the top half that allowed TSU to plate four runs on two hits and two walks.

In the bottom half, Freeman led off with a double and moved to third on a single by Antoine Duplantis.

After an intentional walk to Deichmann, Coomes singled to drive in Freeman. A sacrifice bunt by Beau Jordan scored Duplantis and tied the game at 7-7.

Two batters later, Smith doubled to left to drive in Deichmann and Papierski extended LSU’s lead to 9-7 with a sacrifice fly that scored Coomes.

Both teams went to the bullpen in the fifth, and neigher was charged with a run until Papierski and Watson hit a back-to-back home runs with one out in the bottom of the seventh that put LSU ahead 12-7.

LSU advanced to the winners’ bracket of the four-team, double-elimination NCAA Regional. The Tigers will face the winner of No. 2-seed Southeastern Louisiana and No. 3-seed Rice.