WKU kicks off conference tourney with ULM win

Kyle Williams

The top-seeded Lady Toppers opened up Sun Belt Conference Tournament play with a resounding 9-1 win over Louisiana-Monroe at the Troy Softball Complex on Wednesday.

Junior pitcher Emily Rousseau, who was recently named the Sun Belt Pitcher of the Year, gave up two hits while striking out five.

ULM grabbed an early lead in the second inning before WKU notched five runs on four hits and an error in the bottom of the frame.

Senior Mallorie Sulaski scored the first run with a RBI double and senior Karavin Dew and sophomore Preslie Cruce went on to score the next two runs with RBI singles. WKU added two more runs off a ULM error.

Cruce, who was named to the all-conference second team, extended the Lady Topper lead in the fourth inning with a solo home run with two outs.

Senior infielder Ciara Garcia scored junior infielder Olivia Watkins with a RBI double to give WKU a 7-1 lead.

Garcia went on to score Watkins again in the sixth inning following a Watkins RBI triple that scored Cruce, solidifying the 9-1 victory.

The Lady Toppers will move on to face fourth-seeded North Texas tomorrow at 3 p.m. at the Troy Softball Complex.