LSU-NW State game postponed

LSU’s scheduled baseball game Tuesday against Northwestern State has been postponed to Thursday after road closures for icy weather have made the trek to Natchitoches difficult.

The Tigers (9-2) and Demons (6-4) were scheduled to play at 3:30 p.m., a time moved up from the originally set time of 7 p.m.

They’ll now meet at 3 p.m. Thursday in Natchitoches.

Several roads are closed in the middle portion of the state near Alexandria because of a wave of icy weather that has produced sleet and freezing rain throughout the state.

Game time temperature was expected to be in the mid to low 40s.

Freshman Jared Poché was expected to start for LSU in an outing that could have determined his future role this season. A solid showing would have won him a job in LSU’s Southeastern Conference weekend starting rotation.

Poché will now start in Thursday’s game, coach Paul Mainieri said.

LSU is set to host Sacred Heart (2-1) at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday and has a three-game weekend series against Purdue (1-7).

Brady Domangue will start against Sacred Heart. Ace Aaron Nola will start Friday, Kyle Bouman gets the nod Saturday and Cody Glenn will start Sunday.

Starting with Wednesday’s game, LSU will play five straight games and seven in an eight-day span. That precedes the first three-game conference series at Vanderbilt, March 14-16.

“It’s not the perfect situaiton,” Mainieri said. “The weather dictated it. You just roll with the punches and deal with it and get ready to go.

“The biggest thing is it’s going to force us to use all of our bullpen,” he said. “I’m not talking about two or three batter outings. We’ve got a lot of innings to burn. We’re going to find out what bullpen guys we’re going to be able to rely on.”

If Poché keeps his pitch count down against Northwestern State on Thursday, Mainieri plans to still use him for a couple of innings against Nicholls State next Tuesday. That’s assuming Poché is a part of the rotation at Vanderbilt.

There was “a lot of thought given to” pitching Poché against Sacred Heart, the coach said. Mainieri wants the Lutcher native to pitch on the road before making a decision on his starting rotation.

Poché, Bouman and Glenn are battling for the two spots behind Nola.

Mainieri said he made several attempts to find Sacred Heart a new opponent Wednesday so LSU could travel to Northwestern State. All of them fell through.

A cold, wet winter in the Southeast has again affected the Tigers.

LSU missed multiple practices this preseason because of the chilly temperatures, sleet and even snow. The Tigers’ 4-1 loss to Louisiana-Lafayette was halted in the sixth inning because of a thunderstorm.