Cajuns Sweep Louisiana-Monroe

Ragin'Cajuns softball officially claim the 2009 Sun Belt Conference regular season championship with a doubleheader sweep of Louisiana-Monroe.

Eight of the Cajuns' nine starters collected a hit on the day with three batters claiming three hits on the day and another two hitters registering a pair of hits each. Katie Smith, Lana Bowers and Karli Hubbard each had three hits on the day, while Gabriele Bridges and Codi Runyan finished with two hits in the twin bill.

Bridges finished the day with two home runs, while Runyan and Christi Orgeron each added a home run apiece.

In the circle, the Cajuns allowed just three hits in 12.0 innings of work. Donna Bourgeois picked up her 26th victory of the season as she threw a complete game two-hitter in game one. Bourgeois struck out 12 batters while allowing just one run on two hits. Brittany Cuevas picked up the win in game two. She combined with Amanda Hill for a one-hit shutout in five innings.

GAME 1 RECAP

The Cajuns claimed game one, downing the Warhawks 9-1 in the opening game of the twin bill. Louisiana scored nine runs on nine hits including a pair of home runs to claim their 13th victory in a row.

In the first game, the Cajuns had three batters collect multiple hits. Hubbard was 3-for-4 with two runs scored, two RBI and a triple. Smith, playing in her first game since April 5 against FIU, was 2-for-3 with a run scored. Runyan finished the game 2-for-2 with two runs scored, four RBI and a home run.

Bridges hit her team-leading 14th home run of the game to give UL the lead in the fourth inning – a lead they would not relinquish.

In the circle, Bourgeois picked up her 26th win of the season as they tossed the complete game two-hitter. Bourgeois surrendered a solo home run for the only run of the game for ULM, but Bourgeois regrouped following the homer and retired the next 10 batters in order. She finished the game with 12 strikeouts compared to just one walk. The double-digit strikeout effort marked the 11th time this season Bourgeois has fanned 10 or more batters in a game.

ULM was the first to score, taking a 1-0 lead in the third inning. With two outs, the Warhawk's Brianna Love connected on a solo home run to give the hosts an early lead.

The Cajuns countered in the top of the fourth inning. Hubbard led off the inning with a triple to right center field. She came around to score on a Melissa Verde sacrifice fly to left field. Runyan continued the inning being hit by a pitch. Following an out, Bridges hit a two-run home run to left center field to give UL their first lead of the game at 3-1.

Louisiana added a run in the top of the fifth inning. Smith had an infield single to third base. She stole second base and came around to score on a single to right field by Hubbard.

Leading 6-1, the Cajuns added three runs on three hits including a double to set the final margin of 9-1. Jessica Dupont pinch hit to lead off the inning and was hit by a pitch for the Cajuns' first base runner of the inning. Kelly Cormier re-entered the game and moved to second base on a Smith single. With on out, Hubbard singled to shallow right field that scored Cormier from second. After a second out of the inning, Runyan hit a two-RBI double to the left center field gap to give UL nine runs.

GAME 2 RECAP

The Ragin' Cajuns claimed game two with an 8-0 run-rule victory over the host Warhawks. Louisiana collected eight hits in the game, including two home runs for the second straight game to claim the mercy-rule victory.

Bowers paced all the Cajuns in game two, finishing the game 3-for-3 with a double. Bridges and Orgeron each had one hit in the game as they connected on back-to-back home runs. Gaspard and Bridges led the team with two runs scored while Bowers paced the Cajuns with two RBI.

In the circle, the Ragin' Cajuns received a combined shutout from Cuevas and Hill. Cuevas worked the first 4.2 innings before giving way to Hill for the final out. Cuevas allowed just one hit while strikeout out four batters. Hill fanned the only batter she faced.

The Cajuns were the first to score in game two. Vallie Gaspard singled to lead off the game. A stolen base moved Gaspard to second base and an error left the Cajuns with runners on the corners. Hubbard stole second base to give UL a pair of runners in scoring position. Bridges drew a free pass and ball four was over the catcher's allowing Gaspard to score on the wild pitch, giving UL a 1-0 advantage.

Louisiana plated two more runs in the top of the second inning. Bowers led off the inning with a single and stole second to move into scoring position. Back-to-back walks to Smith and Gaspard loaded the bases with one out. A fielder's choice left the bases loaded but retired the lead runner. Verde hit a ground ball to the ULM shortstop that the fielder mishandled allowing Smith and Gaspard to score and give the Cajuns a 3-0 advantage.

UL increased their lead to 6-0 with three runs in the top of the third inning. The Cajuns led off the inning with back-to-back jacks by Bridges and Orgeron. The back-to-back home runs marked the third time this season UL hit consecutive home runs. All three times the Cajuns have gone back-to-back Bridges has hit one of the home runs. Bowers followed with a double to right center field to keep the inning going. A one-out single by Smith and a walk by Gaspard loaded the bases. With the bases juiced, ULM's pitcher threw a ball in the dirt that got away from the catcher to allow Bowers to score from third on the wild pitch to increase their lead to 6-0.

The Cajuns added two more runs in the top of the fourth inning to complete the run-rule, 8-0.

The Ragin' Cajuns and Warhawks will conclude the series with a single game on Sunday afternoon beginning at 12:00 p.m.

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