METAIRIE, La. -- Third-ranked LSU defeated Louisiana-Lafayette, 8-6, Tuesday night in the annual Wally Pontiff Jr. Classic at Zephyr Field. The game was played before a crowd of 10,853 in the home of the New Orleans Zephyrs, the Triple-A affiliate of the Miami Marlins.
Shortstop Alex Bregman went 3-for-3 on the day with a home run, triple and double. First baseman Chris Chinea and designated hitter Kade Scivicque also launched home runs for the Tigers.
Right-hander Russell Reynolds (2-0) earned the win after 4.2 innings of work where he only allowed two runs on two hits. The sophomore entered the game in relief of starting pitcher Kyle Bouman in the second inning and worked out of a bases loaded jam.
UL-Lafayette starter Connor Toups (1-2) was charged the loss after giving up three runs on four hits in just an inning of work.
The Tigers return to action Thursday for their fourth SEC series of the year against Alabama. The series will be played at Hoover Metropolitan Stadium in Hoover, Ala., and all three games will be streamed on SECNetwork+ through WatchEspn.com and the Watch ESPN app. The games may be heard on affiliates of the LSU Sports Radio Network, including WDGL 98.1 in Baton Rouge.
"I'm really proud of our guys, we swung the bats well and played tremendous defense," said LSU coach Paul Mainieri. "It was just a great team win in front of over 10,000 fans in a terrific environment for college baseball. We played very well tonight, and I'm hopeful we can carry that momentum in this weekend's series with Alabama."
LSU got out to a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning. Jared Foster led off with a double down the third-base line. Foster moved to third on a deep fly ball by right fielder Mark Laird and scored on a sac fly by Bregman. Third baseman Conner Hale doubled off the wall in right field and scored on a single through the left side by Scivicque.
The Cajuns responded in the bottom of the inning after Bouman issued back-to-back bases loaded walks to allow the Cajuns to tie the game. Reynolds entered the game and limited the damage by forcing centerfielder Brian Mills to line into a double play.
LSU continued with runs in the second and third inning with a solo shot by Chinea and two-run home run to deep center field by Scivicque to make it a 6-2 game.
The Tigers scored for the fourth consecutive inning to extend the lead to 7-2 on avtwo-out double by Bregman down the left field line, scoring Laird.
Bregman moved to 3-for-3 on the night and tallied his fourth RBI with a solo home run over the left field wall to extend the lead to 8-2.
ULL put up four runs in the top of the seventh inning. After Reynolds allowed back-to-back singles, Mills hit a single up the middle off of reliever Collin Strall to score a run. Greg Davis then hit a sac fly to right field to score Stefan Trosclair. The Cajuns added the final two runs on one-out single by Nick Thurman and an RBI fielder's choice by Dylan Butler.
LSU closer Jesse Stallings entered the game in the ninth inning and faced the minimum to collect his 11th save of the year, tying Nevada's Adam Whitt for the nation's lead in saves.