3/29/15 5:58 am CT
Good morning, Tiger Fans,
The LSU baseball team bounced back from Friday’s loss with a 7-3 win over Kentucky last night to even the series at one game apiece. The rubber game of the series will be played today at 11 a.m. Freshman right-hander Jake Godfrey will get the start for the Tigers, and Kentucky will counter with junior right-hander Kyle Cody. The game will be available online only via SEC Network+ and can be accessed at WatchESPN.com and the WatchESPN app. It will also be broadcast live on LSU Radio Network affiliates, including 98.1 FM in Baton Rouge.
Freshman right-hander Alex Lange got the start for LSU last night and was once again spectacular. Lange lasted seven innings (116 pitches), allowed one run (unearned) on six hits, and matched his career-high in strikeouts with 13. Zac Person and Alden Cartwright each allowed one run in one inning of relief and allowed a combined five hits.
The Tigers collected 12 hits in the game, and every batter in LSU’s starting lineup had at least one hit. With the game tied 2-2 in the eighth inning, Chris Chinea lined a ball into centerfield that got “lodged” under a pipe at the base of the fence, but it was clearly retrievable. At first, the play was ruled a ground-rule double, but then Coach Mainieri stormed the field and vehemently argued that LSU’s ground rules (which were reviewed before the game and are posted in the dugouts) state that when this happens the ball is still live. Remarkably, the ruling was reversed, resulting in a 3-RBI inside-the-park home run for Chinea. Two batters later, Jared Foster smashed a 2-run homer over the left-field wall to give LSU added insurance.
Here are the game’s video highlights and boxscore.
Unfortunately, the No. 1 LSU softball team suffered its second consecutive loss to No. 16 Kentucky in Lexington, this time by a score of 5-2. LSU entered the series with only one loss in 32 games and were swinging the bat better than any team in the country, but in the last two games they haven’t been able to get the timely hit and have left a combined 16 runners on base. For more on yesterday’s game, please see this article.
Now turning to football, LSU held its third closed practice of the spring yesterday, and according to Coach Miles it was the strongest outing yet for the offense. I know that many of you are most interested in how the quarterbacks did (so I am), so we’ll start with that. After the first scrimmage of the spring, Miles gave Brandon Harris the edge, and after the second one he said Anthony Jennings had the better outing. After yesterday’s scrimmage, Miles wasn’t as specific, but the stats he dished out seem to indicate that Jennings had the better day. Jennings passed for 200 yards and four touchdowns while completing “eight or nine” of 14 throws. Harris, on the other hand, completed 10-12 passes (at first Miles said “a handful” but then he quantified that by saying he has big hands and it was probably 10-12) in 22 attempts and “played pretty well overall.” No yardage was specified. In this article, Miles was quoted as saying, “We want to find a real quality quarterback and have separation from one to the other. That’s what I’m looking for. I’m not necessarily seeing that. Certainly Anthony Jennings has probably performed better more days, and other days its Brandon Harris.”
Below are a few more scrimmage stats and key points that I gathered from Coach Miles’ post-scrimmage chat with the media, and here’s the official press release on the scrimmage as sent out by LSU’s Sports Information Department:
• D.J. Chark continues to have a big spring and once again led all receivers. Chark caught a 70-yard TD pass on the first possession of the game and ended the game with 99 receiving yards and a score.
• Miles also praised wide receiver Trey Quinn, calling him “very competitive.” Quinn had two catches for 35 yards and a pair of TDs.
• Tight end Jacory Washington had two catches for 54 yards and a touchdown.
• Leonard Fournette continues to have an impressive spring, rushing for 100-plus yards and a touchdown. Miles said that Darrel Williams, “ran hard” and finished with 55 yards. As for the fullback position, Miles said JD Moore is doing a really good job.
• Defensively, Miles singled out linebacker Deion Jones (six tackles and pair of sacks), Duke Riley (7 tackles), Jamal Adams (6 tackles, 1 sack), Sione Teuhema (6 tackles, 1 fumble recovery, 1 TD). He also said Kendell Beckwith made some real significant speed plays.
• Miles said Christian LaCouture and Devon Godchaux are the top defensive tackles, as expected, and added that Greg Gilmore is currently No. 3. Quentin Thomas hasn’t been practicing this spring in order to fully heal from a few nagging injuries, but should be good to go in the fall.
• Miles said they will be looking at freshman Donte Jackson as a return man when he reports in August. Travin Dural and TréDavious White are currently working as punt returners.
In football recruiting news, several of LSU’s top targets participated at the New Orleans Regional Nike Opening yesterday. I spoke to a friend who attended the event and was told that LSU 2016 commits Donavaughn Campbell (OT, 6-5, 340, Ponchatoula, No. 11 on our list of Top LA Prospects) and Stephen Sullivan (ATH, 6-6, 230, No. 5) were extremely impressive. Campbell showed that he’s extremely light on his feet for a young man of 340 pounds, and Sullivan is an extremely well put together athlete at 6-6, 230 pounds. Sullivan was working as a receiver and making several spectacular catches, but has the frame to add 20-30 pounds and be an elite defensive end. LSU commits Clifford Chattman (2016, LB/S, 6-5, 190, McDonogh 35, No. 19), Jamal Pettigrew (2016, TE, 6-6, 218, St. Augustine, No. 18 ) and Dylan Moses (2017, LB/RB, 6-2, 220, University Lab) were also at the event, although I didn’t get much feedback on them. Evidently Moses did very well as he and Sullivan were two of three Louisiana prospects who earned invitations to the Opening Finals in Oregon later this summer. The other in-state prospect to earn an invitation was Kriston Fulton (CB, 6-0, 165, Rummel, No. 9).
As I usually do on Sundays, I’ll leave you today with a couple of good reads to go along with your Sunday morning coffee:
Miles wanted to keep Chavis, but had changes in mind
Rabalais: His resilience on display, Anthony Jennings won’t give up LSU’s starting quarterback job without a fight