Despite Friday’s loss, the Purple squad claimed the three-game series with wins on Tuesday and Thursday. The series culminated LSU’s six-week fall practice session.
Gold sophomore right-hander Kurt McCune was the winning pitcher Friday in the six-inning game, allowing one run in three innings with three strikeouts. Relievers Joey Bourgeois and Nick Goody limited the Purple to one run over the final three innings.
Purple starting pitcher Joe Broussard gave up two runs in three innings with one strikeout.
The Purple was led at the plate by senior shortstop Austin Nola, who had a pair of hits, and by sophomore catcher Ty Ross, who doubled and drove in a run.
Swimming and diving
MEN AND WOMEN DEFEAT ALABAMA: The LSU men’s (1-3, 1-2 Southeastern Conference) and women’s (2-2, 1-1 SEC) swimming and diving team earned their first SEC victories of the season against Alabama on Friday at the LSU Natatorium.
The LSU men squeaked by the Crimson Tide (2-1,1-0 SEC) 151-149 in a contest that was not decided until the final event, the 400 freestyle relay.
The Lady Tigers defeated Alabama (2-2, 0-1 SEC) 175.5-124.5 behind strong efforts in individual and relay competition.
The women’s diving duo of junior Elle Schmidt (277.73) and freshman Alex Bettridge (258.60) swept the diving events with victories in the three-meter and one-meter, respectively. Bettridge earned her first SEC victory in dual-meet competition.
For the men, the team’s depth showed as sophomore Kevin Leong cranked out the highest three-meter score (374.25) for the Tigers thus far in a second-place finish, topping senior Matt Vieke’s 371.48 against Auburn.
LASONDRA BARRETT NAMED ONE OF 30 CANDIDATES FOR THE LOWE’S SENIOR CLASS AWARD: LSU senior forward LaSondra Barrett is one of 30 players from across the nation who were selected Friday as candidates for the 2011-12 Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award, which recognizes excellence on both the court and in the classroom.
To be eligible for the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence — community, classroom, character and competition.
The women’s award winner will be announced during the NCAA Women’s Final Four, held April 1 and 3 in Denver. The 30 candidates will be narrowed to 10 finalists midway through the regular season.
LSU’S AUSTIN ERNST HELPS PUSH UNITED STATES TO FIRST IN SPIRIT GOLF: In Trinity, Texas, LSU’s defending NCAA champion Austin Ernst took care of the front nine and teammate Emily Tubert of Arkansas took care of the back nine, helping push the United States team to the verge of the gold medal entering Saturday’s final round of the Spirit International Amateur golf tournament at Whispering Pines Golf Club.
Ernst birdied three holes in the best-ball competition on the front nine and then Tubert erased a bogey and birdied four of the last seven holes to give the American women a 6-under round as part of a 9-under total with the U.S. men that give the Americans the lead in the competition after 54 holes.
The Ernst-Tubert USA team shot 66 on the day for their best ball and is in third place at 10-under par 206, presently in bronze medal position, just two shots out of the lead of Argentina at 204 (69-68-67). Korea is second at 11-under, followed by the American college duo (69-71-66).
MULTIPLE LADY TIGERS ADVANCE ON DAY ONE AT UTAH FALL INVITATIONAL: In Salt Lake City, the LSU women’s tennis team won five singles and one doubles match on day one of play at the Utah Fall Invitational inside the Eccles Tennis Center on the Utah campus Friday.
Seniors Whitney Wolf and Olivia Howlett both reached the semifinals of the A singles bracket.
Wolf, the no. 52 ranked player in the nation, defeated Utah’s Lucia Kovarcikova 6-3, 4-6, 6-2 in the first round and then beat Wyoming’s Alexandra Kovacs 6-3, 6-3.
Howlett took down Jessica Parizher of Wyoming 6-3, 4-6, 6-2 before she beat Utah’s Natasha Smith 6-2, 6-3 in the second round.
Howlett teamed up with sophomore Yvette Vlaar to defeat Boise State’s Sandy Vo and Morgan Basil to reach the doubles second round.
Freshman Rebecca Bodine won her first round match in the B singles over Laura Porras of Idaho State 6-3, 6-1. She fell in the second round to Desiree Tran of BYU 6-5, 6-2.
Vlaar also won her first round B singles match over Christa Gecheva of Wyoming 6-4, 4-6, 7-6. Vlaar lost to BYU’s Aubrey Paul out 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 in the second round.