Disastrous Fifth Inning Sinks Cajuns in Opener vs. Texas State
One ridiculous two-out rally for the Texas State Bobcats offense allowed them to beat the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns 9-3 in the first game of their Sun Belt Conference series.
The Cajuns are 22-19 this season and 8-8 in conference play. They are now tied with the Bobcats for third place in the Sun Belt West Division.
Spencer Arrighetti started for Louisiana, and Texas State scored a run against him early. A leadoff triple in the second inning came home on a sacrifice fly-out, and the Bobcats had a 1-0 lead.
Connor Kimple hit a leadoff double in the bottom of the second, and Tyler Robertson tied the game with a one-out RBI-single. Josh Cofield singled to get Robertson to third, and, in a double steal, Robertson stole home with two outs to give the Cajuns a 2-1 lead.
Including the sacrifice fly in the second, Arrighetti went on a stretch of retiring 11-straight batters into the fifth inning. He struck out the first batter of the inning and got an easy fly out for the first two outs, and then his streak was broken by a two-out double.
That two-out double was the start of nine consecutive two-out hits against the Cajuns starter. Texas State scored eight runs in the fifth inning on that rally.
This season, batters were 11-68 against Arrighetti with two outs. In that one inning alone, the Bobcats were 9-9. Jeff Wilson came on, and the Cajuns finally got the third out on a runner caught stealing, but Texas State had suddenly taken a 9-2 lead.
Head coach Matt Deggs said the rally was an anomaly.
"I've seen it one other time and I was a player when it happened," Deggs said. "It's an anomaly, and we are scratching our heads."
After that rally, the Cajuns bullpen was solid. Jeff Wilson worked 3.1 scoreless innings, and Dane Dixon recorded a clean ninth inning.
Tyler Robertson hit a solo home run to lead off the seventh inning. It was his seventh home run of the year and made the score 9-3.
Robertson transitioned to third base from centerfield for the series opener, and he had a great night for the Cajuns on both offense and defense. Deggs complimented his performance in the opener.
"I was proud of TR," Deggs said. "He's a future big leaguer playing at this level. He's one of the best athletes I've ever been around, so I knew it was going to work out."
The Cajuns offense could not come back from Bobcats' two-out rally in the fifth. They lost 9-3 and fell to 4-17 when they do not score five runs. Deggs said the offense is something that needs to get more consistent at the end of the season.
"What we've got to do is figure out how to score," Deggs said. "It's been an adverse season for us, and we've got to figure out how to respond."
Louisiana will have a chance to respond and win the series by sweeping the doubleheader against Texas State tomorrow. The first game starts at 3:00 p.m. and Connor Cooke will pitch for the Cajuns. The final game of the series is set for tomorrow at 7:00 p.m and Austin Perrin will get the start for Louisiana.