No. 20 LSU sweeps UMass-Lowell on 2 big swings by Gavin Dugas in Game 3

LSU Baseball (11-5)

No. 20 LSU sweeps UMass-Lowell on 2 big swings by Gavin Dugas in Game 3
LSU designated hitter Gavin Dugas (No. 6) celebrates with teammate Giovanni DiGiacomo (No. 7) after a home run. (Source: Josh Auzenne/WAFB-TV)

BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - The LSU baseball team welcomed UMass Lowell to Alex Box Stadium in Baton Rouge for a weekend series, from Friday, March 6 through Sunday, March 8.

LSU Baseball vs UMass-Lowell Game 3 Recap

GAME 3

The Tigers (11-5) were down by one going into the bottom of the eighth but rallied to put up three runs to pull out the 6-4 win and sweep the River Hawks (4-9).

LSU designated hitter Gavin Dugas (No. 6)
LSU designated hitter Gavin Dugas (No. 6) (Source: Josh Auzenne/WAFB-TV)

Designated hitter Gavin Dugas has a pair of two-run homers. The first was in the second inning to give LSU a 2-1 lead. The second also came with the Tigers down by a run in the bottom of the eighth, which ended up being the game-winner. Both of his blasts were to left field.

LSU pitcher AJ Labas (No. 26)
LSU pitcher AJ Labas (No. 26) (Source: Josh Auzenne/WAFB-TV)

AJ Labas gave up four runs on eight hits in 6.0 innings of work. He struck out three and walked one. Jacob Hasty relieved him but was gone after walking two batters. Aaron George struck out one batter in 0.2 of an inning. Then, Devin Fontenot (1-0) earned the win by closing out the last two innings firing heat. He struck out one batter in the eighth and retired the side in the bottom of the ninth.

POST GAME: Gavin Dugas
POST GAME: AJ Labas
POST GAME: Paul Mainieri

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LSU outfielder Maurice Hampton Jr. (No. 14)
LSU outfielder Maurice Hampton Jr. (No. 14) (Source: Josh Auzenne/WAFB-TV)

Head coach Paul Mainieri said outfielder Maurice Hampton suffered a stress reaction in his back, which will keep him out for a while.

“I don’t think it’s going to be anything that will hamper his career going forward in football or even baseball," Mainieri stated. "He may be back before the end of the year is over. For right now, his back is going to need rest and rehabilitation.”

Mainieri also said Saul Garza missed the Saturday and Sunday games after suffering a strained muscle in his back on Friday. He hopes Garza can return next weekend.

GAME 2

The Tigers (10-5) saw their bats on fire in a 12-2 win over the River Hawks (4-8).

RELATED: LSU offense erupts for 12 hits as Tigers clinch series with 12-2 win

Landon Marceaux (2-0) allowed two earned runs on four hits in 5.0 innings of work. He recorded eight strikeouts. Jaden Hill picked up his second save of the season by throwing three strikeouts in four perfect innings.

LSU shortstop Collier Cranford (No. 16)
LSU shortstop Collier Cranford (No. 16) (Source: Josh Auzenne/WAFB-TV)

Collier Cranford was 3-for-4 from the plate with three runs and two RBIs. Giovanni DiGiacomo was 2-for-4 with a run and two RBIs. Daniel Cabrera was 2-for-3 with one run, three RBIs, and two walks.

GAME 1

The Tigers (9-5) started out slow but had big fourth and fifth innings on their way to an 11-2 win over the River Hawks (4-7).

Cade Doughty was 3-for-3 with three RBIs. He scored once. Giovanni DiGiacomo was also 3-for-3. He had one RBI and scored three times. He hit a double in the game.

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LSU pitcher Cole Henry (No. 18)
LSU pitcher Cole Henry (No. 18) (Source: Josh Auzenne/WAFB-TV)

Cole Henry started on the mound. He gave up one run on five hits in four innings of work. He struck out two batters and walked one. Matthew Beck (1-0) relieved him and picked up his first win of the season. He allowed one run on two hits in three innings of work. He struck out four and walked two. Two other pitchers took the hump for the Tigers.

It was win No. 600 at LSU for head coach Paul Mainieri. He became the 12th baseball coach in SEC history with 600 wins at a league school. Mainieri is in his 14th season at LSU.

LSU and UMass Lowell met for the first time this weekend. UMass Lowell is a member of the America East Conference and LSU started the weekend with a 9-3 all-time record against current members of the conference.

The Tigers defeated Southeastern Louisiana, 6-3 on Tuesday, March 3 at Alex Box. The game against Grambling on Wednesday, March 4 had to be rescheduled due to weather. The victory over the Lions started a five-game homestand for LSU.

The River Hawks entered the weekend with a 4-6 record and had not played since March 1 when they lost at Delaware. UMass-Lowell was hitting .256 as a team with six homers and 24 steals in 30 attempts prior to the series. The pitching staff had a 6.31 cumulative ERA. The River Hawks were led at the plate by junior outfielder Vinnie Martin, who was hitting .448 with two doubles, two homers, and five RBIs. Sophomore outfielder Robert Gallagher had a team-high of seven RBIs and nine stolen bases.

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