The Cajuns await to see where they will play next weekend in a three game series, with a chance to go to the 2012 Women’s Softball College World Series.
First of all to the NCAA, (NCAA rep Sonya Varnell), it was first class all the way,” co-head coach Michael Lotief said. “The tournament was done without a hitch the whole way … There’s a reason people have fallen in love with our sport and it’s because we’re doing it the right way. What an awesome opportunity for us to host here. I can’t thank the community of Lafayette enough for how they came out and supported this event. I think when it’s all said and done we’re going to be the highest attended regional in the country.”
With the victory, co-head coach Stefni Lotief picked up her 600th career win, while co-head coach Michael Lotief moved one win shy from his 500th.
“I know coach Stef and I are so proud to be their coaches not just because the game rewarded us … The game did reward us,” Lotief said. “This has been a special year. I mean, you can do all that work and have all that fun and the game sometimes never does reward you but this year has been a special year. Our kids get rewarded because of it. It was just a special weekend, something that I’ll never forget as long as I live.”
Christi Orgeron blasted her team-leading 22nd homerun and drove in three runs, giving her a NCAA-leading 94 on the year. The New Orleans, La. native sits sixth all-time in NCAA history with 288 RBI, just five short of fifth on the list.
Sarah Draheim also homered in the game and drove in two runs on a two-run shot in the fourth inning, her seventh long ball of the season.
Katie Smith collected three hits on the afternoon for the third consecutive day, finishing with a team-high nine hits in the tournament.
Ashley Brignac (23-3) picked up the win, firing five and two-thirds innings, allowing two runs and fanning seven.
Jordan Wallace recorded her second save of the season after a scoreless relief effort of an inning and one-third.
“It’s just a fun, fun place to play at home and just to have this kind of support,” co-head coach Stefni Lotief said. “I think I got chills up and down my spine and I know the girls did too. I just give a great big shout out to the Cajun Nation for everything they brought to the table this weekend, fighting all the way. These little Cajun girls stepped up and got it done and I’m very proud of our team and our coaching staff.”
Brignac recovered from a leadoff single and a walk in the top of the first to retire the Cardinal without any damage.
The Cajuns came to the plate in their first at bat and produced two runs to capture the first lead of the game. Smith and Nerissa Myers singled to start the inning before Christi Orgeron laced a RBI single down the left field line to plate Smith. Myers would later come into score on a Brianna Cherry sacrifice fly for the second run.
In consecutive innings, Brignac worked her way out of a leadoff single by retiring the next three Stanford hitters by way of a line out and two strikeouts, keeping the score at 2-0 in favor of UL.
The visitors had an opportunity to score in the top of the third after a two out double from Ashley Hansen. The fifth-year senior Brignac induced a fly out to centerfield to escape the frame unscathed.
Orgeron gave the Ragin’ Cajuns a lift in the bottom half by launching a solo shot to dead center for a 3-0 advantage.
Louisiana chased Cardinal starting pitcher Teagan Gerhart in the fourth after Draheim launched a two-run shot to left field, scoring Cormier for a 5-0 lead..
Stanford got to Brignac for two runs in the sixth on four hits in the inning. Jenna Rich and Cassandia Roulund recorded hits before Maya Burns singled in Rich for their first run of the contest. Danielle Miller stepped in two batters later and blooped a base hit into left field, plating Roulund to cut the Cajun’s lead to 5-2. Wallace came in for relief of Brignac with Erin Ashby at the plate with two outs and two strikes. The freshman hurler used three pitches to send Ashby down looking for the final out of the inning.
The Ragin’ Cajuns added another run in the bottom of the sixth on an Orgeron sacrifice fly for a 6-2 lead.
Wallace closed out the Cardinal in the seventh by retiring the side in order, picking up her second save of the season.