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The University Star




The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Texas State set to face Louisiana-Lafeyette in opening matchup of Sun Belt Conference Tournament

Texas+State+baseball+head+coach+Steven+Trout+gives+pointers+to+freshman+Chase+Mora+%2836%29+on+third+base%2C+Monday%2C+April+10%2C+2023%2C+at+Bobcat+Ballpark.

Texas State baseball head coach Steven Trout gives pointers to freshman Chase Mora (36) on third base, Monday, April 10, 2023, at Bobcat Ballpark.

The postseason has arrived for the college baseball season, and Texas State (35-21, 17-13 Sun Belt Conference) is slated to face Louisiana-Lafeyette (36-20, 18-12 Sun Belt Conference) in its opening game of the 2023 Guardian Credit Union Baseball Championship at Riverwalk Stadium in Montgomery, Alabama. 
These two teams met just two weeks ago in Lafayette where the Ragin’ Cajuns dominated by winning all three games of the series. Louisiana-Lafeyette held the high-powered Bobcat offense to just 11 runs on the weekend. 
Texas State bounced back in the final weekend series of the regular season by winning two of three games against Louisiana-Monroe, including a very decisive 17-0 victory on Saturday afternoon. The series win moved the Bobcats into the fifth spot in the Sun Belt Conference standings and allowed them to avoid having to play in an opening round game on Tuesday. 
Louisiana-Lafayette dropped its last series of the season to Southern Miss, losing two of three. But having had a strong season in and out of conference play, the Ragin’ Cajuns will pose a tough challenge for Texas State.
Sophomore infielder Kyle DeBarge is carrying an impressive .357 batting average with 32 RBIs, and junior catcher Julian Brock is pacing the Cajuns with 59 RBIs on the season. Perhaps the most immanent threat to pitchers is senior outfielder Heath Hood. 
Hood has started all 56 games for Louisiana this season and is raking with a .344 average, and has proven to be effective on the bases racking up 34 stolen bases on just 39 attempts.
Louisiana-Lafayette is dangerous up and down the lineup as they enter the postseason batting .274 as a team. 
The Texas State starting pitching rotation is going to be crucial. Nobody has been better this year than junior right-hander Levi Wells. Wells earned his eighth win of the year on Thursday night against Louisiana-Monroe. He finished the regular season leading Bobcat pitchers with an 8-3 record and 90 strikeouts. 
Texas State has a very sound offense as well. Freshman second-baseman Chase Mora has left the yard a team leading 17 times this season, and added 54 runs to the scoreboard. 
Production from Mora, and others such as senior outfielder Jose Gonzalez, who finished with 13 homeruns and 58 RBIs, and junior short-stop Davis Powell who is hitting an impressive .353 on the year will cause problems for the Louisiana pitchers.  
The Ragin’ Cajuns lean heavily on senior right-handed pitcher Cooper Rawls. Rawls makes most of his appearances out of the bullpen, and has been lights out. At 10-1 on the season, Rawls has been slamming the door on opposing teams. He has punched out 45 batters, and has an ERA of only 3.05 going into Wednesday. 
First pitch between Texas State and Louisiana-Lafayette is scheduled for 7:30 p.m., Wednesday, May 24 at Riverwalk Stadium in Montgomery, Alabama. The game will be available to stream on ESPN+

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