No. 14/15 LSU softball ready for battle in the LSU/ULL crossover
Editor’s Note: The following is an official press release courtesy of LSU’s athletics department.
BATON ROUGE, La. – No. 14/15 LSU returns for another weekend tournament at Tiger Park as they host Texas A&M-Corpus Christi and UL-Lafayette in the LSU/ULL Crossover Feb. 24-25 before concluding the tournament with a game in Lafayette, La.
The Tigers will open the tournament with a 6 p.m. game on Friday, February 24 against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (7-2). On Saturday, LSU will matchup against UL-Lafayette (6-5) and A&M-Corpus Christi at 2:30 p.m. and 5 p.m., respectively. Sunday, February 26, the Tiger will conclude the tournament with a 2:30 p.m. game versus UL-Lafayette at Lamson Park in Lafayette. All LSU games played at Tiger Park will be streamed on SEC Network+ and Sunday’s game at ULL will be streamed on ESPN+.
The Tigers are off to a 12-0 start after collecting a couple of wins at Louisiana Tech and ULM earlier this week. LSU has outscored its opponents 73-19 and has a .342 batting average with six players batting .300 or better with 10 or more hits in no less than 30 at bats. In the circle, LSU ranks No. 4 in the SEC and No. 23 in the NCAA with a 1.44 ERA.
Pitcher Sydney Berzon was named the SEC Freshman of the Week on Monday and has responded with a pair of wins on Tuesday and Wednesday to improve to 5-0 in the circle this season. Berzon has a 0.27 ERA (No. 3 in SEC) with 24 strikeouts (No. 10 in SEC) in 26.0 innings pitched. The New York native also ranks No. 2 in the NCAA with three saves this season.
Graduate Ali Kilponen has a 3-0 record in the circle and leads the pitching staff with 31 strikeouts (No. 4 in NCAA) and 28.1 innings pitched. Kilponen has a 2.22 ERA and has thrown three complete games, two shutouts and two saves.
Other pitchers to receive decisions this season consist of sophomore Raelin Chaffin and freshman Alea Johnson who are both 2-0.
Shortstop Taylor Pleasants is the nation’s leader with 21 RBIs and is batting .415 behind 17 hits, five home runs and 11 runs scored. Pleasants ranks No. 5 in the LSU record book with 34 career home runs and leads the team with seven multiple-hit games this season.
Center fielder Ciara Briggs leads the team and ranks No. 8 in the NCAA with 18 hits and has a team-high .450 batting average. Briggs also ranks No. 2 in the league with 16 runs scored and matches Pleasants’ seven multi-hit games this season.
Infielder Georgia Clark has a .400 batting average and .667 slugging percentage. Clark has 12 hits and 13 walks that leads the SEC. Clark currently ranks No. 8 all-time with 102 career walks and No. 7 all-time with 32 career home runs.
Texas A&M-Corpus Christi comes to Baton Rouge on a five-game winning streak. The Islanders have a .298 batting average and 3.06 ERA. Infielder Quinn De Avila leads TAMUCC with a .467 batting average, but utility player Kimane Rogron (.394) and first baseman Sydney Hoyt (.429) lead the team with 13 and 12 hits, respectively. Right-handed pitcher Primrose Aholelei leads the pitching staff with 1.89 ERA and 32 strikeouts in 33.1 innings pitched. Aholei has a record of 4-2 and has thrown two shutouts while allowing 28 hits, 13 runs and 13 walks this season.
The Ragin’ Cajuns are coming off a competitive weekend at the TaxAct Clearwater Invitational where they played four nationally ranked top 10 programs and concluded the Florida trip with an 8-0 run-rule victory over No. 25 UCF. Outfielder Karly Heath leads ULL offensively with a .414 batting average, 12 hits and 12 runs. She also has nine RBIs. Outfielder Maddie Hayden also has 12 hits and has a .353 batting average and has scored 10 runs. Pitcher Meghan Schoman leads a large staff of pitchers with a 3-2 record behind a 2.04 ERA and has 27 strikeouts in 24.0 innings pitched.
Sunday’s game at UL-Lafayette begins a 10-game stretch of games away from Tiger Park. LSU will participate in the Judi Garman Classic in Fullerton, Calif. March 3-5 where they will play five games before opening SEC play at South Carolina March 11-13. The Tigers will have a midweek game at Southeastern Louisiana on March 15 before returning home for a three-game series against Tennessee March 17-19.
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