Cowgirls get DH split, Vallejo tosses one-hit shutout

Published 7:00 am Saturday, April 8, 2023

By Warren Arceneaux

American Press

A dominant one-hit performance from Ashley Vallejo in the second game of a Southland Conference doubleheader against Northwestern State earned McNeese State a split with a 4-0 win Friday at Cowgirl Diamond.

The Demons (19-16, 6-5 SLC) rallied to win the first game 7-6.

In the second game, McNeese (27-12, 9-1) took a 3-0 lead in the first inning. Rylie Bouvier beat out a bunt single with Alayis Seneca scoring when the throw to first went down the right-field line.

Reese Reyna scored from third on the throw from right field to second base. Bouvier advanced to third on a passed ball and scored on a Crislyne Moreno sacrifice fly.

The Cowgirls added a fourth run in the fourth inning. Erin Ardoin walked and scored on the back end of a double steal.

Vallejo (8-7) retired the first 14 batters she faced, striking out 10. She extended her SLC winning streak to 13 games over the last two seasons.

She finished with a career-high 14 strikeouts and no walks. Northwestern’s State’s lone hit came on an infield single by Laney Roos in the fifth inning.

“She was as close to perfect as you can get,” McNeese head coach James Landreneau said of Vallejo. “They had no hard-hit balls. She was able to command both sides of the plate really well. She was able to get ahead then expand the zone a little bit to get them to chase some pitches. Once they were able to get their swings in, get on time with her, she was able to throw the offspeed pitch for a strike tonight and slow their bats down a bit.”

Game 1

Northwestern St..7

McNeese St..6

Taylor Williams doubled to score Bailie Ragsdale with the winning run in the top of the seventh inning, snapping McNeese’s nine-gane conference winning streak.

McNeese had taken a 6-4 lead in the fourth inning on a two-out, three-run triple to left by Kaylee Lopez.

Northwestern State pulled within one run on an RBI single by Ragsdale in the fifth and tied the score on a RBI infield single by Tristin Court in the sixth.

Lopez had three hits and drove in four runs for McNeese. Mariana Torres also had three hits for the Cowgirls.

Kat Marshall had three hits for the Demons.

The Cowgirls, the SLC’s top defensive team, committed three errors.