Lopez dominates, LSUA offense pounds out 18 hits in come-from-behind victory in RRAC Tournament opener

Odette Lopez finished the game facing the minimum in the final four innings against LCU
Odette Lopez finished the game facing the minimum in the final four innings against LCU(Joe Dupree, LSUA Sports Media)
Published: May. 6, 2022 at 10:51 PM CDT
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SAN ANTONIO, Tx. (LSUA) - Strong pitching from Odette Lopez and an offense that scored eight runs on the final three innings to propel the LSUA softball team to a 12-7 victory over cross parish rival Louisiana Christian on Friday morning at the St. Mary’s Softball Field in the first game of the Red River Athletic Conference Tournament.

LSUA (20-24) is facing No. 1 seed Our Lady of the Lake on Saturday at 12:30 at the OLLU Softball Field. The Saints knocked off No. 8 seed Huston-Tillotson on a walk-off home run 3-1 on Friday.

Down 7-2 going into the fourth, Lopez threw nothing by zeroes, shutting out one of the best offenses in the conference the final four frames.

While she was tossing scoreless frames, the LSUA offense came to life, scoring the final 10 runs of the game, including eight in the final three innings to move the Generals in to the winner’s bracket.

“I was really proud of the girls for not losing focus after giving up seven runs in one inning,” Co-Head Softball Coach Adam Burch said. “They continued to chip away every inning to keep themselves in a position to do what needed to be done.”

Trailing 7-4 in the fifth inning, the Generals scored four in the frame on six hits off LCU relief pitcher Miah Broussard. Brylee Kelley began the scoring in the inning with an RBI double, scoring Amber Giddens, who had singled with one out to start the rally for the Generals.

Two batters later, Bailey McCleary hit an RBI single to the pitcher. An error kept it going for Sabrina Carter, who singled for one of her three hits on the game to give the Generals their first lead since the second inning.

LSUA scored four more in the seventh to put the game away. Lauryn McMahon tallied an RBI single and Ashlynn Pauwels hit a two-out, two-run double and Giddens followed with an RBI double to make the final 12-7.

Giddens tallied three hits and two runs driven in for the Generals.

Each team stranded a runner on second base in the first inning before the fireworks in the second inning.

Despite trailing at one point 7-2, the Generals took the first lead of the game in the second frame. Pauwels, who went 2-for-4 with three runs driven in, came through with an RBI double to put LSUA on top first.

Katherine Atkins added an RBI single, one of her two hits on the game, to push the lead to two.

LCU (27-21) responded with a seven spot in the second, as sisters Kayla and Jordan Dauthier each crushed solo home runs in the first three batters to tie the score. Two singles and a walk chased LSUA starter Anjahnelle Townsend from the contest.

Desiree Squires recorded the biggest hit of the inning with a two-out bases clearing triple that pushed the Wildcats lead to 6-2. An error with Kayla Dauthier at the plate scored Squires to make it 7-2.

Lopez buckled down after surrendering the bases clearing triple, only surrendering two hits the rest of the way, facing the minimum in the final four innings, only allowing one hit, which was wiped away on a double play to finish off the Generals win.

Fresh off her selection as First Team All-RRAC, Bailey McCleary registered three more hits and drove in a run. Fellow Bailey and All-Conference selection Bailey Layton posted two hits after being chosen to the second team.

The victory improved her record to 5-6 on the season.

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