In a back-and-forth battle that lasted until the 14th inning, Louisiana pulled away with a win, defeating Maryland 4-3. Neither team budged for what seemed like an eternity, but in the end the Ragin’ Cajuns were able to play small ball to bring in the winning run.
Down by a run in the ninth, the Ragin Cajuns worked to get bases loaded against Maryland closer John Murphy. A wild pitch scored Bourgeois to tie it up at three, but the Terps’ reliever was able to get out of a jam to force extra innings.
However, extra inning dominance by the Ragin’ Cajuns was the opposite of the trend in the rest of the game.
Ragin’ Cajuns starter Dalton Horton pitched a perfect game into the sixth inning, sitting down 16 consecutive hitters to start his outing. Everything changed when second baseman Tommy Gardiner stepped up to the plate.
Gardiner, who was a late addition to the lineup after AJ Lee was scratched due to a leg injury, snuck one through the hole into the outfield, reaching base as Maryland’s first base runner.
Center fielder Chris Alleyne, batting in the nine-hole, followed Gardiner with a blast off the wall resulting in an RBI triple. The third outfielder, Caleb Walls, then used small ball to tie it up, putting down a safety squeeze that scored Alleyne.
With the momentum on their side, the Terps hit a pair of doubles in the next inning by Taylor Wright and Ben Cowles put Maryland in the lead, 3-2. The freshman Cowles delivered a clutch two out hit that finally knocked Horton out of the game after 6.2 innings.
Zach Thompson took the mound for the Terps, and after a shaky second inning, dominated Louisiana. In 6.2 innings of work, the righty fanned five hitters, while conceding five hits and two runs.
Mark DiLuia came in for Thompson picked up right where there starter led off. The sophomore stranded a runner at third in the seventh and then picked up all three outs in the eighth, not giving up a hit in the process.
Seven different pitchers came out of the bullpen for Maryland, hurting its chances to back up the starters in the next game on Saturday night.