JONESBORO, Ark. – Tyler Robertson lined a one-out RBI single to right in the top of the ninth inning and the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns capitalized on five Arkansas State errors to claim a 5-3 win in a Sun Belt Conference series on Saturday at Tomlinson Stadium-Kell Field.
Kyle DeBarge drove in a pair of runs while Max Marusak and Heath Hood recorded two hits each as Louisiana (17-14, 6-5 SBC) won its third straight game and claimed its third straight SBC series.
The series will conclude on Sunday at 1 p.m. Louisiana will send right-hander Jeff Wilson (2-1, 3.62 ERA) to the mound with Arkansas State (5-23, 0-11 SBC) countering with right-hander Carter Holt (0-1, 10.80 ERA).
The game will be streamed live on ESPN+ and can be heard in the Lafayette area on KPEL-FM (96.5), the #GeauxCajuns app and the Varsity Network app.
Louisiana manufactured a run in the first inning as Marusak drew a walk, stole second, moved to third on a sacrifice bunt and scored on DeBarge’s sacrifice fly to center. Marusak, who added a pair of stolen bases while scoring three times, scored the second run for the Ragin’ Cajuns in the sixth inning after leading off with an infield single.
Marusak stole second and moved to third on DeBarge’s grounder back to the mound before scoring and unearned run as Carson Roccaforte reached on a two-out throwing error by Red Wolves shortstop Wil French.
After the Red Wolves cut the deficit to 2-1 in the bottom of the sixth on Brandon Hager’s RBI single to right, Louisiana increased its lead as Julian Brock’s two-out single up the middle scored Hood.
Arkansas State bounced back to tie the game at 3-3 in the seventh when leadoff hitter Daedrick Cail hit a two-out single to right to drive in French and Jacob Hager.
But Louisiana would put the game away in the ninth after pinch-hitter CJ Willis drew a leadoff walk off Red Wolves’ closer Kevin Wiseman (0-2). Willis moved to second when an attempted pickoff throw got past A-State first baseman Mickey Coyne before moving to third when Marusak reached when French’s throw from short pulled Coyne off the bag for the second error in the inning and fifth of the game.
Robertson, who went 1-for-3 in the game, then extended his career-best hitting streak to 10 games when he lined a single to right to drive in Willis for the go-ahead run before DeBarge followed with a sacrifice fly to right.
Chipper Menard (3-1) pitched the final 2.2 innings to earn the win for Louisiana. Jacob Schultz posted his second straight quality start for Louisiana after scattering three hits and striking out four in 6.0 innings of work.
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