The LSU softball team put up the most runs scored in a season opener as they defeated Tulsa with an impressive score of 19-1 Thursday night.
Junior pitcher Maribeth Gorsuch started the game with a 3-0 count on the first batter, but fought back to push a full count. The batter was ultimately walked on a call that left fans questionable. The top of the first inning ended on a pop-fly to left field with the Hurricanes leading 1-0.
“Knowing I have an offense behind me and a defense behind me is super comforting,” Gorsuch said. “The first inning, I was a little nervous — first game jitters — but I settled down. I just kind of got my thoughts together, trusted my defense.”
LSU made a good start with outfielder Aliyah Andrews making her way to second base. Andrews was followed up by infielder Amanda Doyle hitting to left outfield pulling an RBI and putting herself on second. Graduate transfer Amanda Sanchez started her LSU career with an RBI and put herself on second base, which put the Tigers at a 2-1 advantage.
Bottom of the first continued strong when infielder Shemiah Sanchez got on first. As designated player Shelbi Sunseri hit deep into outfield, she gained three RBIs and put herself on second, giving the Tigers a 6-1 lead. After a few walks, Tulsa decided to switch out to their third pitch once LSU led 9-1.
Even the new pitcher didn’t help Tulsa very much because catcher Michaela Schlattman hit to gain two more RBIs. The first inning ended with Tigers leading 12-1.
Top of the second was quick with three up, three down by LSU’s defense. Bottom of the second, Tulsa’s defense picked up as they got two quick outs on pop-flies, but a walk on infielder Amanda Sanchez left the bases loaded.
This gave Shemiah Sanchez the opportunity to gain two RBIs, which then led Schlattman to hit it down the middle for a RBI double. Infielder Amber Serrett followed up with a homerun, pulling in two more players with her. Second inning ended with Tigers leading 18-1.
“I get amped up a little bit,” Serrett said. “So I was just trying to relax, and by that third at bat, I was a little bit more in my element and a little bit more relaxed.”
Top of the third, the Tiger defense had another three up, three down situation.
The Hurricanes continued to push defensively with a quick out, but Doyle hit straight down the middle for a single RBI. The Hurricanes continued to fight back, getting their first strike out of the night on Amanda Sanchez. A slow third inning for the Tigers with one run made their lead 19-1.
Top of the fourth was also slower for the Tigers, but they managed to save Tulsa from scoring with a sideways catch from freshman Taylor Tidwell and an out on first. During the fourth inning, Tulsa picked up their defensive play as they pushed a three up, three down and left the Tigers with their first scoreless inning.
Top of the fifth showed the Tigers defense picking up the pace with a fast three up, three down to end the game by mercy rule. Tigers pulled out a season opener win by a score of 19-1 taking down Tulsa.
“It feels good,” LSU coach Beth Torina said. “The offense came out strong and did a good job, did all of the things they needed to do. I’m confident in this offense. It’s one thing to do it one day, but we’ve got to go out consistently and swing the bats. They’ve got to prove that they can maintain that aggressive offense for the season.”