Baseball shocks No. 13-ranked LSU-Shreveport with four-game sweep
The baseball team swept the four-game series against the NAIA’s No. 13-ranked LSU-Shreveport (LSUS) to improve to 20-9 overall and 8-0 in Red River Athletic Conference (RRAC) play. The Saints are 16-2 this month and set a new record for the longest winning streak in Saints history with eight victories.
Head Coach Bryan Aughney said, “This was a great weekend for OLLU baseball. Shreveport is a good team and we matched their play this weekend. It all started with our pitching. We attacked the strike zone and had more walks than we would like, but Alec Martinez (JR/Corpus Christi, Texas) pitched lights out game one and set the tone. I could not be prouder of these players and how they played this weekend. We continue to compete in every situation, and it seemed like every time a run was scored against us, we bounced back and scored on our own.”
Aughney continued, “We put ourselves in a good position in the conference, and there is still a lot of baseball to play. We must continue to work hard and take care of the little things. I’m proud of how we played this weekend, and it was a great effort all around. We are looking forward to next weekend.”
The Saints trail the all-time series against Shreveport 4-16. The wins mark the first Saints victory over the Pilots since 2018.
Martinez and Jose Diaz (SR/Pinar del Rio, Cuba) combined for a no-hitter in the first game against Shreveport. The no-hitter marks the second time in Saints history the feat has been achieved. The Saints scored the lone run in the second inning. Connor Dayton (SO/San Antonio, Texas) singled to left field to score Andrew Ogletree (JR/Mission, Texas). The Saints held on to win 1-0. Martinez struck out four batters, and Diaz earned the save in the seventh inning.
Martinez commented, “I wanted to give our team a chance to win against a good opponent. Everything seemed to be working on the mound for me and the defense behind me helped. I knew I hadn’t allowed a hit and wanted to keep dominating. Diaz came in for the save and sealed the deal. There is no man better for the job than Diaz.”
The bats for both teams came alive in the second game of the series. LSUS struck first with three runs in the top of the second inning. The Saints responded with five in the following inning. OLLU tacked on another run in the fourth inning to lead 6-3.
The Pilots tied the game in the seventh inning with three runs. OLLU gained the momentum back in the bottom of the inning. Robert Arredondo (JR/Corpus Christi, Texas) scored on a wild throw, and Matthew Klar (SO/San Antonio, Texas) scored after a double by Dayton. The Saints won 8-6 to take a 2-0 series lead heading into Saturday.
Game three was just as exciting as the second game. The Saints led 4-0 after three innings. OLLU eventually led 7-4 and ended up winning 8-5. Jacob Mitchell (JR/Harker Heights, Texas ) batted 2-for-3 and drove in four runs. Boedy Flores (SO/Harlingen, Texas) tallied two RBIs, and Ryan Chapa (JR/Corpus Christi, Texas) went 2-for-3 at the plate.
The Saints won 7-5 to close the series and earn the sweep. OLLU scored at least one run in the first, third, fourth, fifth, sixth and eighth inning. The Saints tallied 11 hits and seven pitchers combined for 10 strikeouts. Four different Saints players had a multi-hit game. OLLU is first in the RRAC with an 8-0 conference record.
The Saints play one game against St. Mary’s University on the road on March 30 at 6 p.m.