The Ragin' Cajun faithful turned out in full force on Saturday afternoon as the 25th ranked Cajuns grabbed their 11th Sun Belt Softball Tournament Championship with an 8-0 win over Florida Atlantic. A raucous 1,537 fans saw Tournament MVP Christi Orgeron blast two home runs for 5 runs, upping her RBI total to 97, the fifth highest total in NCAA history.
Fellow All-Tournament selection Ashley Brignac (30-5) threw a complete-game, two-hit shutout to earn her second career 30-win season. Brignac struck out five batters with two walks.
Gabriele Bridges joined Orgeron and Brignac on the All-Tournament team.
For the 45th time in 2011, the Cajuns got on the board first as they took advantage of an Owl error to plate a single run in the first inning. Bridges and Paige Cormier would each reach base on two-out walks.
Sarah Draheim would then deliver a ground ball through Carly Speerin's legs at shortstop. The misplayed ball would roll all the way to the fence, allowing Bridges to score but Cormier was thrown out at the plate trying to score a second run.
The Cajuns would break things open with a big second inning, plating four runs on four hits, thanks in large part to Orgeron. Megan Granger got things started off with a double and moved to third base on a single by Katie Smith. Granger would score on an RBI single by Myers that would leave two runners on base for Orgeron.
Orgeron would blast a three-run shot over the bleachers in left field to give the Cajuns a 5-0 lead and move her season RBI total to 95. Florida Atlantic (34-25) would pull Rose Gressley (20-13) after the second inning in favor of Taylor Fawbush.
Orgeron would strike yet again in the fourth inning, this time with a two-run homer to center field after Fernadez had walked to lead off the inning. The homer was the 23rd of the season for Orgeron and moved her record-setting RBI total to 97.
The Cajuns would add their final run in the fifth inning thanks to a solo home run from Paige Cormier (pictured above), giving the Cajuns the eight-run 'mercy' rule on the game. The home run was her fifth of the season.
The Cajuns (49-9) third straight crowd of more than one thousand pushed the overall tournament attendance over 10,000 for the first time in the 12-year history of the Sun Belt Conference Softball Championship.
The Cajuns will now await the NCAA Selection Show to find out their postseason destination. The Selection Show will air on ESPNU on Sunday night at 9:00 p.m. CT.
Check back with www.RaginCajuns.com for all information regarding NCAA Regionals including schedules and ticket information.
Louisiana 8 (49-9)
|Myers, Nerissa ss||3||1||1||1||0||0||2||0||0|
|Orgeron, Christi rf||3||2||2||5||0||0||0||0||0|
|Bridges, Gabriele 1b||2||1||0||0||1||0||4||0||0|
|Cormier, Paige 2b||1||1||1||1||2||0||3||1||0|
|Draheim, Sarah c||3||0||0||0||0||0||5||0||2|
|Cherry, Briana cf||3||0||0||0||0||2||0||0||0|
|Granger, Megan 3b||3||1||1||0||0||0||1||1||1|
|Fernandez, Natalie dp||1||1||0||0||1||1||0||0||0|
|Smith, Katie lf||1||1||1||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Brignac, Ashley p||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||0|
Florida Atlantic 0 (34-25)
|Croney, Kerri rf||2||0||0||0||1||1||1||0||1|
|Walker, Brittany cf||2||0||0||0||0||1||1||1||1|
|Barnes, Heather 2b||2||0||0||0||0||0||2||0||0|
|Gressley, Rose p/dp||2||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Fawbush, Taylor dp/p||1||0||0||0||1||0||0||0||0|
|Speerin, Carly ss||2||0||0||0||0||2||1||2||1|
|Curfman. Cari 1b||2||0||0||0||0||0||3||0||1|
|Parmerter, Ashlyn 3b||2||0||1||0||0||1||2||2||0|
|Broyles, Hailey lf||2||0||0||0||0||0||1||0||0|
|Wilson, Quincy c||0||0||0||0||0||0||4||0||0|
Score by Innings R H E -------------------------------------- Louisiana........... 140 21 - 8 6 0 Florida Atlantic.... 000 00 - 0 2 2 --------------------------------------
|E - Barnes, H(21); Speerin, C(29). DP - FAU 1. LOB - UL 2; FAU 4. 2B - Granger(4). HR - Orgeron 2(23); Cormier(5). SH - Smith(8). SB - Myers(21); Smith(20).|
|Brignac, Ashley W,30-5||5.0||2||0||0||2||5||0||0||0||0||17||19||7||3||88|
|Gressley, Rose L,20-13||2.0||4||5||4||2||1||0||0||0||0||10||12||4||0||43|
Win - Brignac (30-5). Loss - Gressley, R (20-13).
Save - None.
Pitches/strikes: Brignac 88/55; Gressley, R 43/27; Fawbush, T 51/33.
Umpires - HP: Jackie Shults 1B: Jana Tidwell 3B: Jim Cooper
Start: 3:08 pm Time: 1:30
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