LAKE CHARLES, La. -- In front of a Cowgirl Diamond record crowd, Andrea Smith hit her first career grand slam to lead the sixth-ranked LSU softball team past McNeese State, 6-0, on Wednesday evening.
The attendance of 847, surpassing the complex record set last year when the Tigers visited the Cowgirls, saw LSU improve to 32-6 on the year and remain undefeated in mid-week games. McNeese State dropped to 14-24 on the year, including a pair of losses to the Tigers.
Cody Trahan earned the win to improve to 4-0 on the season with her third complete-game shutout. In front of a large contingent of her family and friends who made the short trip from Orange, Texas, the freshman allowed three singles and walked four while striking out 10.
Smith, the SEC Player of the Week, finished the game 1-forf-3 with the grand slam, while Tayl'r Hollis and Kristen Hobbs each posted multiple hits as Hollis was 2-for-3 with a double and a run scored and Hobbs was 2-for-2 with a run scored.
“It was another mid-week workman like performance,” said LSU head coach Yvette Girouard. “We just try to get the job done during the mid-week games. Cody threw well enough to shut down McNeese and Andrea came up with the big blow in the second inning. Now it’s time for us to go home and get ready for Auburn.”
LSU got things going in the bottom of the second inning. Killian Roessner led off with a walk. With one out, Hollis doubled to right center, sending Roessner to third. Hobbs was then hit by a pitch to load the bases. In her first at-bat after missing 18 games with a broken finger, Shannon Stein was hit by a pitch to score Roessner from third. Smith continued to roll at the plate as she slammed a grand slam over the left field fence for the 5-0 LSU advantage.
It was the first home run of the season for Smith and the first grand slam of her career. For the season, the Tigers have now hit four grand slams, the most of any season in school history, bringing the total bases loaded knocks to 15 all-time for LSU.
In the top of the eighth, the Tigers tacked on another run. Quinlan Duhon led off with a single through the left side. She moved to second on an infield ground out by Rachel Mitchell. Klein then came up with her Southeastern Conference-leading 15th double of the season on a bloop to left field that scored Duhon from second. The double extended Klein’s hitting streak to nine games, one shy of her season best.
LSU extended it winning streak to 52 games against in-state opponents dating back to a 2-1 loss to UL-Lafayette on April 18, 2001. The Tigers are 105-4 all-time against Louisiana opponents, including undefeated marks against eight different teams, including McNeese State. In 11 seasons of softball, LSU has only lost to two different in-state schools, with a lone loss in 12 meetings against Nicholls State and three losses in 15 meetings with the Lady Cajuns.
LSU also improved to 16-0 all-time against McNeese State, including the season sweep this year. LSU is also 73-2 all-time against Southland Conference opponents, including a 4-0 mark this year. For her career, Girouard is now 63-24 all-time against the McNeese State, with a 7-0 record while with the Tigers.
LSU returns to conference play next weekend at Auburn. The Fighting Tigers will take on AU in a three-game series beginning with a doubleheader on Saturday at 1 p.m. and concluding with a single game on Sunday at 1 p.m. LSU will return home next week for a mid-week doubleheader against Kentucky next Tuesday before hosting South Carolina in a three-game series on Easter weekend, with a doubleheader on Friday and a single game on Saturday.