Cooper homers, Sacco shines in Techsters win

Less than an hour after being named one of 10 finalists for the Schutt Sports/NFCA Division I National Freshman of the Year, Louisiana Tech centerfielder Sierra Sacco showed why.

Sacco reached base all five times (three hits, 2 walks), stole three bases, scored four runs and drove in two more to lead top-seeded Louisiana Tech to a 16-8 win over Marshall in the second day of the 2022 Conference USA Tournament at Lovelace Stadium in Denton.

Former Cedar Creek star Katelin Cooper blasted a two-run home run — one of three homers on the day for Tech — and the Lady Techsters (39-18) scored in four of five innings in the eight-run rule shortened contest.

Cooper’s two run shot came in the bottom of the fourth inning and gave Tech a 9-4 lead. Kylie Neel followed one batter later with a solo home run to push the advantage to 10-4.

After Marshall closed the gap to 11-8 after the top of the fifth, Madie Green hit a mammoth solo home run beyond the trees down the left field line — her team-leading 13th of the season.

Sacco recorded a two-run single in the fifth and then Amanda Gonzalez ended the game with a two-run double to right centerfield.

The 16 runs scored were the most ever in a Conference USA Tournament game.

Audrey Pickett (25-5) picked up her 25th win of the season, despite allowing eight runs — six earned — on eight hits in 5.0 innings of action.

Sacco (3-3, 4 runs, 3 SB, 2 RBI), Gonzalez (2-3, 2 runs, 3 RBI), Green (3-3, 3 runs, 2 RBI), and Neal (2-3, HR, RBI) all recorded multi-hit games.

Tech plays North Texas Friday at noon with the winner advancing to the title game Saturday. The loser of the contest will play at 5 p.m. Friday against the winner of Marshall and WKU (2:30 p.m.).