Deviating from its pitching plan, LSU’s bullpen lifts the Tigers to back-to-back wins at the SEC tournament

LSU's Parker Bugg (46) reacts after defeating Auburn 9-8 in a game at the Southeastern Conference college baseball tournament at the Hoover Met, Wednesday, May 20, 2015, in Hoover, Ala. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)

HOOVER, Ala. — Paul Mainieri and Alan Dunn met earlier this week before LSU’s first two games of the Southeastern Conference tournament. They mapped out their blueprint for the pitching staff for the first game and then, on the next day, for the second game. They developed a plan. They decided what pitchers could… Continue reading →

Freshman Alex Lange in line to send LSU to championship game in consecutive weeks

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- LSU starting pitcher Alex Lange

HOOVER, Ala. — Alex Lange has a chance to send LSU to a championship game in consecutive weekends. Lange will start when top-ranked LSU (48-9) hosts Florida (42-16) on Saturday afternoon in the Southeastern Conference tournament semifinals, and coach Paul Mainieri wants the right-handed pitcher to start in the Tigers’ second game of the NCAA… Continue reading →

On Deck: SEC tournament, LSU vs. Florida

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- LSU starting pitcher Alex Lange

WHEN: 30 minutes after Texas A&M-Vanderbilt game (noon) WHERE: SEC tournament semifinals, Hoover Metropolitan Stadium, Hoover, Ala. RANKINGS: LSU is consensus No. 1 in all six national polls. Florida is as high as No. 6. PROJECTED PITCHERS: LSU, Fr. RH Alex Lange (10-0, 2.11) vs. Florida, Fr. RH Alex Faedo (4-1, 3.59) TV: SEC Network ONLINE: ESPN3.com and the… Continue reading →

Just two wins away, ‘crazy legs’ Carley Hoover and her LSU softball teammates eye the Women’s College World Series

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- LSU starting pitcher Carley Hoover (21) pitches against Arizona State during the Division I NCAA Baton Rouge Regional, Sunday, May 17, 2015, at LSU's Tiger Park in Baton Rouge, La.

Carley Hoover chose LSU for a chance to go to the Women’s College World Series, and the right-hander’s arrival gave the Tigers a better chance of getting there. Now, Hoover will be center stage as LSU faces Arizona in the NCAA Baton Rouge super regional, which begins at 2 p.m. Saturday at Tiger Park. The winner… Continue reading →

Baton Rouge super regional: Without dominant pitching, Arizona learned to adapt

Arizona catcher Chelsea Goodacre hits an RBI single in the fifth inning during an NCAA college softball tournament regional game against Minnesota, Saturday, May 16, 2015, in Tucson, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

Following a disastrous weekend at UCLA when the Arizona softball team was handed two ugly, mercy-rule losses in a three-game sweep, seniors Chelsea Goodacre and Kellie Fox called their teammates together. “We all said it,” Goodacre remembered of the meeting. “We don’t have that dominant pitcher.” It’s unfamiliar territory in Tucson, where the tradition lies… Continue reading →

Baton Rouge super regional: Three and out from Tiger Park

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS --LSU's Bianka Bell (27) gets an RBI double in LSU's three-run second inning of LSU's 6-3 win overTexas A&M Sunday in LSU's Tiger Park.

LSU 1. Player to watch SS Bianka Bell got the Tigers here with a game-winning RBI single against Arizona State in the Baton Rouge regional title game last week. That hit ended a brief slump for Bell, who has been the top hitter on a team with several players having… Continue reading →

SEC spring meetings agenda includes transfers, camps

Associated Press photo by Brynn AndersonSoutheastern Conference Commissioner Mike Slive sits in his office during an interview Friday in Birmingham, Ala. The Southeastern Conference agenda for its spring meetings leans heavily toward ensuring other leagues don't have any competitive advantages, whether its satellite camps or rules restricting graduate transfers.

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — The Southeastern Conference agenda for spring meetings leans heavily toward ensuring other leagues don’t have any competitive advantage, either from satellite camps or graduate transfers. Coaches have grumbled about outside competitors like Penn State’s James Franklin and Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh holding football camps as guest coaches in the SEC’s fertile recruiting… Continue reading →

LSU swings big bats in victory, earns Friday off before Saturday semis in SEC tournament, aka 'LSU Invitational'

Advocate staff photo by ANDREA MABRY -- Jared Foster and Jake Fraley celebrate after Foster scored during Thursday's game against Arkansas at the Southeastern Conference tournament in Hoover, Ala.

HOOVER, Ala. – Who needs starting pitching? Not LSU. Not here. The Tigers overcame a second sluggish starting pitching performance in 24 hours by flashing their big-hitting guns, and Russell Reynolds shined in relief as LSU beat Arkansas 10-5 to advance to the Southeastern Conference tournament semifinals. Coach… Continue reading →

Scott Rabalais: Hot? Cold? Hitting? Hurting? However you label them, these Tigers just keep winning

Advocate staff photo by ANDREA MABRY -- Jared Foster and Jake Fraley celebrate after Foster scored during Thursday's game against Arkansas at the Southeastern Conference tournament in Hoover, Ala.

Hot, or cold? Hitting, or hurting? Label the LSU Tigers as you may in this Southeastern Conference tournament, depending on whether their bruising hitting allows you gloss over their startlingly ineffective starting pitching to reminisce wistfully about the Geauxrilla Ball days. Just label them winners once again here,… Continue reading →

LSU track and field set for NCAA East prelims

Photo provided by Bryan Wayne/LSU Sports Information -- LSU's Rodney Brown goes into the NCAA East preloiminary rounds, which started Thursday, with the top discus throw in the nation.

The LSU men’s and women’s track and field teams will have 43 entries in the NCAA East preliminary rounds, which begin a three-day run Thursday in Jacksonville, Florida. The preliminary rounds serve as the first two rounds of the NCAA outdoor championships with the top 12 finishers in individual events as well as relays advancing to the national semifinals… Continue reading →

Bullpen shines in LSU’s comeback win over Auburn on Wednesday

Advocate file photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- LSU pitcher Doug Norman

HOOVER, Ala. — This is not the way LSU freshman Doug Norman wanted his most important relief appearance to begin. Norman allowed a leadoff single to Anfernee Grier and then misfired a throw to first on a pickoff attempt — a two-base error that put Grier at third base with no outs. A rookie from South Carolina,… Continue reading →

Former LSU slugger Blake Dean named interim baseball coach at UNO

Phoro provided by UNO athletics -- Blake Dean

Blake Dean, the former slugger who led LSU to two College World Series before he got into coaching, was named UNO’s interim coach Thursday. Dean, 27, spent the past two seasons as the Privateers’ hitting coach. He will officially take over as interim coach Monday, the school said in a release. He replaces Hall of Fame coach… Continue reading →

Rabalais: LSU’s win over Auburn was nice ... but what about that pitching?

Advocate staff photo by ANDREA MABRY -- LSU pitcher Jared Poche drops the ball as Daniel Robert reaches first base Wednesday during the Southeastern Conference baseball tournament in Hoover, Ala.

HOOVER, Ala. — If you were wondering how the LSU Tigers would inject meaning into what so many were calling meaningless trip to Southeastern Conference tournament, the nation’s No. 1 team figured out a way in inning No. 1 Wednesday against Auburn. One is the position in the LSU starting rotation Jared Poché has occupied almost this entire season.… Continue reading →

The LSU and Arizona softball teams, who face off in the super regionals, know each other well

LSU shortstop Bianka Bell (27) chases down Arizona's Payton Kornfeind (2) as Kornfeind got caught in a squeeze play between first and second base during the Wildcats' NCAA Regional game against LSU at Hillenbrand Stadium. The Wildcats lost to the Tigers 5-1. Photo taken Sunday, May 18, 2014 in Tucson, AZ. Photo by Ron Medvescek / Arizona Daily Star.

LSU and Arizona aren’t conference rivals, and their campuses are separated by more than 1,000 miles. Nonetheless, their softball programs are very familiar with each other as they prepare to meet in the NCAA Baton Rouge super regional. The best-of-three series opener at 2 p.m. Saturday at Tiger Park will be the fifth meeting between the teams… Continue reading →

Foster makes presence felt with homer in second

When LSU needed someone to spark a comeback Wednesday night, it went to Jared. Jared Foster, thought to be academically ineligible just two weeks ago, smashed a two-run homer in the second inning and led off the Tigers’ six-run fifth with a double to play a huge role in a dramatic 9-8 victory over… Continue reading →

LSU rallies from five runs down — twice — to claim 9-8 win over Auburn in SEC tournament opener

Advocate staff photo by ANDREA MABRY-- LSU teammates congratulate Chris Chinea after he scores the run to tie the game against Auburn in the first round of the Southeastern Conference baseball tournament in Hoover, Al. Wednesday, May 20, 2015.  ORG XMIT: LABAT

HOOVER, Ala. — This is a place where LSU opponents and their dreams go to die. Top-seeded and top-ranked LSU overcame its largest deficit of the season, mounting an improbable, five-run comeback — twice — in a 9-8 win over Auburn on Wednesday night to continue its Southeastern Conference tournament magic. The Tigers (47-9) won an eighth straight SEC… Continue reading →

LSU’s Joe Alleva: Debate on some 'some silly NCAA rules' likely to come up at SEC spring meetings next week

LSU Athletic Director Joe Alleva

LSU Athletic Director Joe Alleva says one topic that could come up next week at the the annual SEC spring meetings in Sandestin, Fla., is what he called “some silly NCAA rules.” Alleva was interviewed Tuesday morning on 104.5 FM ESPN’s Culotta & The Prince radio show. Some rules could stand to be made “more logical… Continue reading →

LSU trims list of 'Voice of the Tigers' candidates, 'confident we’ll have somebody that fans will be happy about'

Advocate staff photo by TRAVIS SPRADLING -- Jim Hawthorne will retire after the 2015-16 basketball season.

The hunt for the next “Voice of the Tigers” is winding down. LSU has narrowed its list of candidates to replace Jim Hawthorne to about 10 people and will begin meeting face-to-face with the finalists over the next few weeks, said Michael Bonnette, a school spokesman and one of the decision-makers in the process.… Continue reading →

Postseason maestro Paul Mainieri leads his LSU Tigers into the SEC tournament Wednesday

Associated Press photo by Butch Dill -- LSU coach Paul Mainieri signals to the fans after the Tigers defeated Florida 2-0 to win the Southeastern Conference baseball tournament Sunday in Hoover, Alabama..

HOOVER, Ala. — For seven years, each time Karen Mainieri opened her refrigerator door, the unopened bottle of champagne stared back. “It was a constant reminder,” the wife of LSU baseball coach Paul Mainieri said Tuesday. A reminder of failure, frustration and losing. Call Karen an optimist. She bought the champagne in 1995… Continue reading →

LSU coach Les Miles gets choked up at Red Cross event recounting Hurricane Katrina experiences: Louisiana's strength 'never more evident than in how it handled that storm'

Advocate staff photo by TRAVIS SPRADLING -- LSU head coach Les Miles talks with an official, after a second missed field goal by LSU place kicker Colby Delahoussaye (42), during the second half, Saturday, Nov. 15, 2014 in Fayetteville, Ark. LSU lost to the Razorbacks 17-0.

Nearly a decade ago, LSU football coach Les Miles was ill-prepared for one of the most challenging times of his career when Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast before he even coached a game with the Tigers. Miles on Tuesday recalled his first year at LSU in 2005, which will forever be associated with one of the worst… Continue reading →

Rabalais: Why restraint by LSU in SEC baseball tournament could turn into a national championship in a few weeks

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- LSU players reach to touch the championship trophy after LSU's 2-0 win over Florida to win the SEC Tournment  in the Championship Game in May 2014 in the Hoover Metropolitan Stadium in Hoover, AL.

HOOVER, Ala. — Since the minute it clinched the Southeastern Conference championship, 45 minutes before Saturday’s regular-season finale at South Carolina, the question has hung out there like a chest-high fastball: Should LSU care about winning the SEC tournament? On the face of it, it’s a ridiculous question. Should you want to… Continue reading →

SEC baseball tournament roundup: Auburn wins, advances to face LSU

Auburn pitcher Trey Wingenter, center left, hugs pitcher Cole Lipscomb after Auburn defeated Kentucky in a Southeastern Conference college baseball tournament game Tuesday, May 19, 2015, in Hoover, Ala. Auburn won 6-3. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

HOOVER, Ala. — Daniel Robert and Jackson Burgreen each had three hits, and Cole Lipscomb pitched 7.2 strong innings to lead Auburn to a 6-3 win over Kentucky on Tuesday night in the single elimination first round of the Southeastern Conference tournament. The Tigers (35-22) will face regular-season champion LSU (46-9) on Wednesday. Lipscomb (8-2)… Continue reading →

LSU men win SEC All-Sports title

With conference titles in baseball and men’s golf, the LSU men captured the Southeastern Conference All-Sports title for 2014-15, which was compiled this year by GateHouse Media. The SEC All-Sports title is the first for the LSU men since 1996-97. The LSU women finished third this year in the all-sports standings. Overall, LSU came in third behind No.… Continue reading →

LSU gets Auburn in SEC tournament opener

HOOVER, Ala. – It’s LSU against Auburn on Wednesday. Auburn beat Kentucky 6-3 on Tuesday in the single-elimination day at the Southeastern Conference tournament, thrusting the NCAA bubble Tigers into a game with top-seeded and top-ranked LSU. The teams meet at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday at Hoover Metropolitan Stadium as the double-elimination portion of the 12-team event… Continue reading →

SI report: Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson on LSU coach Ed Orgeron: ‘He’s a phenomenal coach and crazy as all hell’

Coach Ed Orgeron with Mike the Tiger

Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson pondered his Wrestlemania 32 and Hollywood successes recently and immediately recalled his former University of Miami defensive line coach, Ed Orgeron now with LSU, according to a report in SI.com.

"He's a phenominal coach and crazy as all hell, Johnson said in the interview. Johnson was heavily influenced by Orgeron's straight no-nonsense approach when… Continue reading →

Joe Alleva: When LSU tries to schedule big-name non-conference home games, this big percentage of schools immediately says 'no'

Advocate staff photo by BILL FEIG -- LSU quarterback Anthony Jennings (10) throws downfield as offensive guard Hoko Fanaika (69) and center Ethan Pocic block during the first half at NRG Stadium in Houston.

. Home-and-home series vs. prominent non-conference teams are uncommon these days in college football. And LSU Athletic Director Joe Alleva has seen why first-hand. "Literally 80 percent just say 'no' right away" when LSU contacts potential opponents, Alleva said Tuesday morning on 104.5 FM ESPN's Culotta & The Prince radio show. "They're a little more… Continue reading →

SEC baseball tournament preview: Burning questions for LSU, players to watch and the team to beat

Advocate staff photo by JOHN OUBRE -- LSU's Alex Bregman

Team to beat: Vanderbilt Outside of LSU, the Commodores have the biggest target on their backs. They’re the reigning national champs, and they have three pitchers ranked in the top 100 of college draft prospects. Dark horse: Arkansas The Hogs are on a roll. They’ve won their… Continue reading →

LSU coach Paul Mainieri named SEC coach of the year; 5 players All-SEC first team

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- LSU head coach Paul Mainieri in the dugout before LSU's game against Missouri, Saturday, May 9, 2015, at LSU's Alex Box Stadium, Skip Bertman Field in Baton Rouge, La.

. Half of LSU’s starting lineup is All-Southeastern Conference, and so is its No. 2 pitcher. Catcher Kade Scivicque, outfielder Andrew Stevenson, third baseman Conner Hale, shortstop Alex Bregman and freshman starter Alex Lange made the All-SEC first team released Monday. Paul Mainieri was named SEC Coach of the Year, and Lange is the fifth LSU player to be… Continue reading →

Fair or foul? In the park or out? Limited college baseball replay review could have changes ahead

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- LSU head coach Paul Mainieri argues the call of home plate umpire Kevin Sweeney after LSU shortstop Alex Bregman (8) was called out at home, Saturday, Apr. 25, 2015 at LSU's Alex Box Stadium, Skip Bertman Field in Baton Rouge, La.

Moments after an extra-innings loss to Mississippi State, LSU shortstop Alex Bregman gestured toward home plate. “Did he even touch the plate?” Bregman asked. Running from second base on what was a walk-off single, Jake Vickerson slid around catcher Mike Papierski, who applied a sweeping tag. Home plate umpire Scott Kennedy called Vickerson safe, and the… Continue reading →