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Tiger baseball gets opening win over UTSA
Starting pitcher Jaden Hill’s 6.2 shutout innings, Cade Doughty’s towering home run and Gavin Dugas’s two-RBI grounder propelled No. 15 LSU to a 3-1 victory Friday over UT San Antonio inside Alex Box Stadium, Skip Bertman Field.
The Tigers moved to 12-3 on the year with the win and the Roadrunners fell to 5-4.
Ma’Khail Hilliard (2-0) recorded the win, working 0.1 inning with one strikeout that ended the top of the eighth inning and kept the contest tied at 1-1.
Hill started the game and tallied six strikeouts, giving up no runs on four hits with two walks. Garrett Edwards earned the save, retiring the side in order in the ninth with one strikeout.
“It was a great ball game,” said LSU coach Paul Mainieri. “UTSA has a very good hitting team, and their pitching was outstanding tonight. We hit a couple of balls hard with runners in scoring position, but they made some very nice defensive plays. We didn’t swing the bats great, but I attribute some of that to UTSA’s pitching.
“We gave up the lead in the eighth, but we came right back to score the go-ahead runs, and I’m glad we found a way to win.”
Doughty broke a scoreless tie in the bottom of the sixth when he launched a home run to left field to give LSU a 1-0 lead. The homer was Doughty’s fourth of the season.
Hilliard entered the game in the top of the eighth, inheriting runners on first and second with two outs.
Hilliard induced a ground ball that was fielded by second baseman Zach Arnold, but first baseman Tre’ Morgan dropped Arnold’s throw for an error that allowed the tying run to score. Hilliard, however, struck out the next UTSA batter to end the inning.
In the bottom of the eighth, the Tigers responded emphatically with a Dylan Crews knock to right field and a hit by pitch for Morgan. After Doughty reached on a fielder’s choice and an intentional walk to DH Cade Beloso, Dugas smashed a ball to second base and hustled down the line to beat the back-end throw on a potential double play.
Morgan and Doughty scored on the play to give the Tigers a 3-1 advantage before Edwards fired a scoreless ninth inning to secure the LSU victory.
UTSA reliever Hunter Mason (1-2) was charged with the loss, as he allowed two runs on one hit in 1.2 innings with one walk and one strikeout.
The Tigers will return to the diamond Saturday night at 7 p.m. CT to take on the Roadrunners in the second game of the series. The matchup will be televised on the SEC Network with Dave Neal and Kyle Peterson on the call. Fans are also encouraged to tune into the LSU Sports Radio Network affiliates.
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