Mar 2, 2013 11:39 PM by UL Sports Information
ORLANDO, Fla. - The Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns softball team split their two games at the Diamond Nine Citrus Classic for the second day in a row. The Cajuns fell to #5/8 Texas in the first game of the day, 7-2, before beating the College of Charleston by a score of 16-0 in a combined five-inning no-hitter between Kristin Martinez and Jordan Wallace on Saturday in Orlando.
"Every time out we are still learning." Head coach Lotief said after the second game. "We have things we have to work on, we're still a work in progress. Our kids are fighting and they are staying positive. We played against some top teams and got exposed a little bit, but I see the mindset in theses kids, they are staying positive and learning from the adversity and failure and trying to make it better."
Martinez got the start against College of Charleston, tossing the first four innings, allowing just three base runners and striking out three. Wallace pitched the fifth inning and struck out the side the finish the game, and the no-hitter.
The Cajuns only scored in two innings against the College of Charleston, but that consisted of a six and 10 run inning to propel them to a 16-0 win. The two big innings and 16 runs overshadowed the fact that the Cajuns held Charleston to just three base runners and zero hits.
Sarah Draheim started the scoring in the second inning, with a two-run blast to left center field. The home run was her second of the day, she homered in the seventh inning of game one, and third in the tournament.
Louisiana would go on to score four more that inning with RBI singles from Natalie Fernandez, Brianna Cherry and a two-RBI double from Shellie Landry.
Charleston threatened in the third inning, loading the bases without getting a hit, getting runners on with two walks and on a fielders choice, including one with a botched run down in which no batters advanced.
The Cajuns went scoreless in the third before a 10-run outburst in the fourth inning.
The fourth inning was highlighted by the first career home run by Kelsey Vincent, and a RBI triple by Brianna Cherry. Freshman Taylor Meaux also picked up her first career RBI on a fielders choice and Linzey Cifreo knocked a pitch into center field for her first career hit.
Both Landry and Draheim finished game two with three RBI, and Cherry, Vincent and Samantha Walsh each picked up two RBI.
"We wanted to come back strong." Senior Matte Haack said. "We wanted to prove that we can hit and that we're going to be fine. Scoring a lot of runs helps."
The Cajuns dropped the first game of the day, in a preview of next Wednesday's doubleheader in Austin.
With Shellie Landry on first and Brianna Cherry on third, Louisiana was the first team to crack the run column, by way of a double steal scoring Cherry.
The Longhorns answered immediately, plating four runs in their half of the third inning. Rather than using small ball like the Cajuns used to manufacture runs, the Longhorns did it with power. Following a two-out single, they slugged back-to-back-to-back home runs and took a 4-1 lead.
The score would stay locked at 4-1 for the next three innings.
The Cajuns would threaten in the fourth and fifth innings but come up short. Samantha Walsh came up to the plate in the fifth inning with the bases loaded and two outs and send a fly ball to deep center field, just shy of a go-ahead home run.
Sarah Draheim hit what would be her first home run of the game in the seventh, but not before Texas had added three more in their half of the sixth. Draheim's homer wouldn't be enough, and the Cajuns fell 7-2.
Shellie Landry finished the day 4-for-8 with three RBI and continues to lead the Cajuns in RBI with 31 on the season.
"I think we're learning every game." Haack said after both games. "Win or lose we're going to learn and get better. A loss at the beginning of the season isn't a tell-tale sign, but we're going to learn from it and get better."
The Cajuns split on the day pushed their record to 15-4 on the season. They will finish off the Citrus Classic tomorrow morning when they take on Illinois State at 8 A.M. (Central Time). The Cajuns have seen the Red Birds one time already this season, defeating them by a score of 8-5