KISSIMMEE, Fla. — For the second straight day, the Louisiana-Lafayette softball team split two games at the Diamond Nine Citrus Classic.
This time, on Saturday morning, the Ragin’ Cajuns fell to Texas 7-2. In the afternoon, pitchers Kristin Martinez and Jordan Wallace combined for a five-inning no-hitter in a 16-0 wipeout of College of Charleston.
“Every time out, we are still learning,” coach Michael Lotief said after the second game. “We have things we have to work on. We’re still a work in progress. Our kids are fighting and they are staying positive. We played against some top teams and got exposed a little bit, but I see the mindset in these kids. They are staying positive and learning from the adversity and failure and trying to make it better.”
Martinez started against College of Charleston, allowing three base runners and striking out three in four innings. Wallace pitched the fifth inning and struck out the side the finish the game and the no-hitter.
The Cajuns (15-4) scored six runs in the second inning and 10 runs in the fourth inning.
Sarah Draheim started the scoring in the second inning with a two-run homer over the wall in left center field. It was Draheim’s second of the day; she also homered in the seventh inning against Texas.
ULL went on to score four more runs in the second, getting RBI singles from Natalie Fernandez, Brianna Cherry and a two-RBI double from Shellie Landry.
Charleston threatened in the third inning, loading the bases with two walks and a fielder’s choice — including one on a botched rundown in which no batters advanced.
Martinez got out of the jam.
The Cajuns went scoreless in the third before their 10-run outburst in the fourth inning.
It was highlighted by the first career home run by Kelsey Vincent and an RBI triple by Cherry.
Freshman Taylor Meaux also picked up her first career RBI on a fielder’s choice, and Linzey Cifreo knocked a pitch into center field for her first career hit.
Landry and Draheim finished the second game with three RBIs. Cherry, Vincent and Samantha Walsh each picked up two RBIs.
“We wanted to come back strong,” senior Matte Haack said. “We wanted to prove that we can hit and that we’re going to be fine. Scoring a lot of runs helps.”
The Cajuns dropped the first game of the day to Texas — an opponent they’ll soon see again.
Louisiana-Lafayette will play a doubleheader Wednesday against the Longhorns in Austin, Texas.
Saturday morning, the Cajuns scored first against Texas, taking a 1-0 lead when Cherry came home on a double steal.
The Longhorns answered, scoring four runs in the bottom of the third. Texas did it with power. Following a two-out single, the Longhorns slugged three straight homers and took a 4-1 lead.
Draheim hit her first home run of the day in the seventh, but not before Texas had added three more in the bottom of the sixth.
The Longhorns closed out a 7-2 win.
“I think we’re learning every game,” Haack said after both games. “Win or lose, we’re going to learn and get better. A loss at the beginning of the season isn’t a telltale sign, but we’re going to learn from it and get better.”
The Cajuns finish off the Citrus Classic at 8 a.m. Sunday against Illinois State. ULL defeated the Redbirds 8-5 on Feb. 23.
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