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Lamar’s Luna earns first victory

LSCPA sports information

BEAUMONT – Lamar senior right-hander Ciara Luna worked out of some early trouble to pick up her first win of the season as the Cardinals defeated the South Dakota State Jackrabbits 5-2 on the second day of the Cardinal Classic at the LU Softball Complex on Friday.

Luna (1-5) gave up five hits and two runs over the first two innings, but settled down to allow just two hits and no runs over the final five innings as the Cardinals (4-8) improved to 30-8 all-time at the LU Softball Complex since its opening in 2015.

Luna did not walk a batter and struck out six as LU won its second straight game. Luna gave up single runs in each of the first two innings but shut the door after that.

After falling behind 1-0 in the top of the first, the Cards responded with a run of their own in the bottom of the inning as a Sable Hankins sacrifice fly scored Brittany Rodriguez.

The Jackrabbits (3-9) took a 2-1 lead in the top of the second on an RBI double who was thrown out trying to extend it to a triple to end the inning.

The Cardinals took the lead for good with two runs in the bottom of the third thanks to an RBI single by Shelby Henderson and a run-scoring grounder by Hankins.

McDowell singled home Paige Holmes in the fourth inning to make it 4-2 before closing the scoring in the sixth inning on an RBI double by Holmes.

That was more than enough for Luna, who threw 89 pitches, 64 for strikes.

McDowell and Brittany Rodriguez had two hits apiece for the Cardinals, who outhit the Jackrabbits 8-7 on the day.

Ashly Bender (3-3) started and took the loss for the Jackrabbits, allowing seven hits and four runs, three earned, over five innings.

UP NEXT

LU faces Kansas at 4:45 p.m. today in the Cardinals’ only game of the day. There are five games today, starting with South Dakota State playing Alabama A&M at 10 a.m. LU plays two of Sunday’s four games, facing Northern Illinois at 10:15 a.m. and Tulsa at 2:45 p.m.