Transfer Kelley Lynch makes first big impact to help LSU softball remain undefeated

Transfer Kelley Lynch makes first big impact to help LSU softball remain undefeated
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LSU’s Kelley Lynch has not gotten off to a fast start this season, but she provided her biggest moment Saturday since transferring from Washington.

Lynch hit a two-run single in the bottom of the sixth inning to keep the Tigers softball team unbeaten with a 3-1 victory against San Diego State in the Purple and Gold Challenge at Tiger Park.

LSU (16-0) played McNeese State in the second game Saturday night.

Lynch, who missed all five games last weekend and entered the game batting .250, drove the first pitch she saw from SDSU reliever Allie Light between third base and shortstop to score Ali Newland and McKenzie Redoutey, who beat the throw to the plate. It was Lynch’s sixth hit and doubled her RBI total to four.

Rae Chaffin (6-0) got the pitching victory with help from Sydney Berzon, who got her second save. Chaffin walked leadoff hitter Angie Yellen in the top of the seventh inning, bringing the tying run to the plate, before yielding to Berzon. Catcher Maci Bergeron threw out Yellen trying to steal second before Berzon got two easy groundouts to end the game.

The news wasn’t all good. LSU leadoff hitter and third baseman Danieca Coffey suffered an undisclosed injury while making a sparkling defensive play in the fifth inning. She had to be helped off the field.

LSU’s winning rally started with one out. Raeleen Gutierrez singled, Newland walked and Redoutey singled to load the bases. After Bergeron grounded into a force out at home, Lynch provided her big hit to snap and 0 for 5 weekend.

SDSU’s Mac Barbara had tied the game in the previous half inning with her second home run, and fifth of the season, off Chaffin. The Tigers had taken a 1-0 lead in the fourth on back-to-back doubles by Gutierrez and Newland.

Chaffin, who beat SDSU 9-1 the night before, struck out four and walked four while allowing three hits. She worked out of a serious jam in the fifth to protect LSU’s 1-0 lead. Yellen walked and Coffey made a running catch of a bunt pop up by Katie Goldberg when she collided with catcher Hannah Carson and was replaced by Maddox McKee.

Jade Ignacio singled and both runners moved up on a passed ball, but Chaffin caught Makena Brocki looking for a strikeout and got Bella Espinoza to pop out to end the inning.

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