LSU softball remained undefeated Sunday morning with an 8-0 win over Bucknell.
LSU outscored its opponents 73-2 in six games during opening weekend. LSU coach Beth Torina said that although the Tigers played complete games all weekend, the offense was the star.
“I think (the lineup) is scary, especially when you get in the middle of the lineup,” Torina said. “There’s really no way around it. It’s pretty scary there in the middle, and it’s pretty deep too. We saw a lot of production one through nine.”
Torina credits the offensive improvement with offseason adjustments and consistent preparation by her team.
It looked like LSU would have its first full game of the season as it faced Bucknell for the second time, but the Tigers brought across four runs in the bottom of the fifth for their sixth mercy-rule victory.
As has been the norm this weekend, LSU jumped out to a quick lead against the Bison.
Outfielder Aliyah Andrews led off the first inning with an infield single and stole second. Fellow outfielder Taryn Antoine wasted no time, hitting an RBI triple to score Andrews from second. Antoine tagged up on a long fly ball from infielder Amanda Doyle to give LSU a 2-0 lead.
Bucknell threatened in the top of the third inning, hitting two singles, but LSU got the final out of the inning on a pop fly to left field.
The score remained 2-0 until pitcher Shelbi Sunseri hit a two-run home run in the bottom of the fourth to give LSU a 4-0 lead. It was her fourth home run of the weekend.
Bucknell got a runner on base in the fifth but once again couldn’t bring the run across home plate.
Andrews and Antoine started the bottom of the fifth inning with back-to-back singles and Doyle reached on a fielding error to load the bases. Infielder Amanda Sanchez then hit a two-RBI double down the left-field line to extend LSU’s lead to 6-0.
Sanchez, a graduate transfer from Missouri, went 2 for 3 with two doubles and two RBIs.
“I caught myself smiling over there in the coaches box a few times during her at-bats,” Torina said. “Even when she swings and misses, it's scary. I just caught myself enjoying the moment, and I think she did too.”
Surseri was walked to load the bases up again and infielder Amber Serrett hit an RBI single to add another run. Designated player Georgia Clark was walked with the bases loaded to bring across the eighth and final run.
Sunseri was solid in the circle as well, allowing no runs on three hits.
“It’s really tough to (hit and pitch),” Torina said. “You have to put in so much work in order to pull that off. If anybody’s going to do that, its going to be her because she’s not afraid of the work.”
Though tougher competition lies ahead for the Tigers as they travel to Florida for the Clearwater Elite Invitational next weekend, Torina wants her team to see it as an opportunity to compete.
“We’re in the SEC, so I feel like every game is a postseason game,” Sanchez said. “This tournament is going to be that type feel too. I hope that we do good, and I can’t wait to get out there and see the competition.”