Louisiana Baseball Loses to Indiana 12-4 at Round Rock Classic
The Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns baseball team dropped their second straight game at the Round Rock Classic with a 12-4 loss to the Indiana Hoosiers on Saturday.
With the loss, Louisiana fell to 3-3 overall. The Cajuns played well for most of the contest, but a third inning that fell apart was the difference in the game. They'll have one more chance to salvage the weekend trip when they play nationally ranked No. 2 Arkansas on Sunday at 4:00 p.m.
Head coach Matt Deggs was not pleased with his team's performance against No. 4 Stanford on Friday, and he made changes throughout the lineup for this game. Afterwards, Deggs said that there were positives to take away from the loss.
"The scoreboard is not going to suggest it, but I'm way more encouraged today than I was yesterday," Deggs said. "This is severe weather conditions, worse than yesterday. I played a brand new lineup out there, and I did that intentionally because the guys that went out against Stanford need to figure it out. They will, but we also have a bunch of other dudes that need to get their feet wet as well."
Deggs talked about the third inning, but also shared that he was happy with how his offense looked.
"I was a lot more encouraged with out at-bats today," Deggs said. "There was a lot more hard contact. We had longer at-bats. What happened to us today is one inning where nobody had ever seen Brandon Talley throw the ball like that. And that's weather related, obviously. And we didn't make some plays that we're going to make all the time to result in a seven run inning. You take that away, and I'm encouraged by a lot of the stuff I saw today."
Peyton Havard got the start for Louisiana and opened with a clean first frame. The Cajuns got a one-out walk but didn't do anything with it to close the inning.
Indiana struck first in the second inning with two runs on four hits. A leadoff home run and two doubles scored the two runs, but Havard was able to strand two runners in scoring position with a pair of strikeouts.
Louisiana responded with a run in the bottom half of the second. Heath Hood singled, and, with two outs, Will Veillon crushed a RBI-triple to score him. A strikeout stranded him at third, but the Cajuns had cut into the lead to make it 2-1.
The third inning was disastrous for Louisiana. Indiana scored seven runs on only two hits. After recording only two fielding errors in their first five games, the Cajuns had three in that one inning. Deggs mentioned the weather in the postgame and how it affected the defense and pitching.
Havard gave up a leadoff double, and an error put two runners on. Brandon Talley came out of the bullpen, and walks allowed Indiana to open up a huge inning. He walked the first two batters he faced on eight straight balls to score a run. Talley got into a full count with the bases loaded and walked another batter. A sacrifice-fly and error scored two more runs. A hit-by-pitch loaded the bases again, and, for the third time in the frame, a walk scored a run.
After a fielder's choice plated another Hoosier, Indiana finally got their second hit in the inning. Finally, a groundout ended the nightmare inning, but Louisiana was in a massive 9-1 hole. Tally threw 47 pitches in relief to get three outs in the inning, but as Deggs said, the weather conditions didn't help him or the defense behind him.
The leadoff batter got on base to start the bottom of the third, but two strikeouts and a groundout quickly ended the threat. David Christie entered out of the bullpen in the fourth and threw a scoreless inning for the Cajuns.
The bottom half of the fourth got off to a good start for Louisiana. Two leadoff walks and a balk put two runners in scoring position with nobody out. However, two groundouts and a strikeout allowed only run to score, cutting the lead to 9-2. It was a missed opportunity for what could have been a big inning. Christie came back out and threw his second scoreless frame.
Louisiana's offense got a two-out walk but didn't add anything else to end the fifth. A two-out solo home run by the Hoosiers erased the run that the Cajuns had earned in the fourth. Christie recorded his sixth strikeout to get Louisiana out of the inning.
After the Cajuns went down in order in the sixth, Indiana earned a two-out rally with a walk and Louisiana's fifth error to score two more runs on a RBI-double. They scored two runs on one hit in the inning to go up 12-2.
A seventh inning rally almost got the Cajuns back into the game. Veillon started things off with a double, and Kyle DeBarge recorded his first career RBI with a single. A hit-by-pitch and error loaded the bases, and a RBI-single by Mason Zambo cut into the lead again. However, a double-play with the bases loaded prevented Louisiana from cutting into the lead any further. Entering the eighth, they were down 12-4.
Cooper Rawls made his Cajun debut out of the bullpen and sat the Indiana batters down in order. Louisiana left a runner on base in each of the eighth and ninth innings and the Hoosiers held on to win 12-4, handing the Cajuns their second straight loss..
Outside of the third inning, Louisiana and Indiana played a very competitive game. Deggs was also able to get a look at some new players in the lineup, and he said he was more pleased with this performance than when the team lost on Friday to No. 4 Stanford.
Up next, Louisiana plays nationally ranked No. 2 Arkansas on Sunday at 4:00 p.m. to wrap up their three-game weekend at the Round Rock Classic.