ASU Baseball Drops Sun Belt Opener to Louisiana-Lafayette Friday

LAFAYETTE, La. (3/12/10) – The Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns used a six-run second inning to take charge early and went  on to defeat the Arkansas State Red Wolves 13-5 Friday night at M.L. Tigue Moore Field in the Sun Belt Conference opener for both teams.

With the win, ULL snapped a four-game ASU win streak on the Cajuns' home field that dated back to the 2007 season and dropped the Red Wolves to 8-5 on the year and 0-1 in Sun Belt Conference play.  Louisiana-Lafayette improved to 9-4 overall and 1-0 in Sun Belt Conference action.

"The second inning certainly hurt us and they (ULL) did a good job at the plate with two strikes," said ASU head coach Tommy Raffo.  "We have a tall task ahead of us tomorrow.  We have our work cut out for us and we have to get a lot better than we were tonight."

The Cajuns struck first with their six-run second inning. Right fielder Matt Goulas tripled to lead off the inning for ULL and came home for the game's first run on an RBI single from left fielder Alex Fuselier.  A two-run triple from shortstop Greg Fontenot gave the Cajuns a 3-0 advantage, and Fontenot scored when designated hitter Brian Bowman squeezed him home with a sacrifice bunt.  A two-run home run from second baseman Jordan Poirrier later in the inning stretched the Louisiana-Lafayette lead to 6-0.

Arkansas State answered with a run in the top of the third when second baseman Giovanni Garcia doubled and scored when right fielder Todd Baumgartner reached on a ULL error, but the Ragin' Cajuns got the run back in the bottom of the frame when Fuselier homered for the 7-1 ULL lead.

Poirrier launched his second home run of the night in the fourth, a two-run shot that extended the Cajuns' lead to 9-1, before ASU scored three in the top of the sixth.

Center fielder Michael Faulkner doubled to drive in the Red Wolves' first run in the sixth before scoring on a triple from shortstop Jordan Kimball.  Kimball came home on a base hit from Garcia to cut the ULL lead to 9-4.

Louisiana-Lafayette used an RBI double from Fontenot and took advantage of a pair of ASU throwing errors to score two more in the seventh.  Arkansas State scored once in the eighth on an RBI single from left fielder Josh DeMoney, before the Ragin' Cajuns put two more on the board in the bottom of the inning to set the final at 13-5.

Junior Andy Ferguson (2-1) took the loss for Arkansas State, giving up nine runs on nine hits, with six strikeouts and four walks in four and two-thirds innings of work.  Louisiana-Lafayette starter Zach Osborne (1-1) struck out nine batters in seven innings of work to get the win for the Cajuns.  Osborne gave up four runs on 10 hits without issuing a walk.

Faulkner and Garcia both went 3-for-4 at the plate with an RBI to lead ASU, while Poirrier was 3-for-4 with four runs driven in to lead ULL.

The Red Wolves and Ragin' Cajuns will resume the series Saturday at 2:00 p.m.