BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – With a bye week in SEC play scheduled for the weekend, No. 12/14 LSU will host the Purple & Gold Challenge tournament March 30 – April 2 at Tiger Park.

The Tigers will welcome BYU, NC State, and Louisiana Tech to Baton Rouge this weekend. The tournament begins with a 6 p.m. game on Thursday, March 30 against BYU. LSU will play two games on Saturday, March 31 against NC State at 4:30 p.m. and BYU at 7 p.m. The Tigers will conclude the weekend with a 4 p.m. game against Louisiana Tech on Saturday, April 1 and a noon contest versus NC State on Sunday, April 2.

Each game featuring LSU will be streamed on SEC Network+ with Lyn Rollins and Yvette Girouard on the call. Fans can also listen to games on 107.3 FM in the Baton Rouge area with Garrett Walvoord calling the game over the airwaves.

The Tigers went 3-1 last weekend after defeating McNeese in a midweek game and won the weekend series at Ole Miss, 2-1. LSU ranks No. 5 in the SEC with a .319 batting average and No. 2 in the league with 272 hits. LSU has the fifth-lowest ERA in the conference at 1.98 and has 189 strikeouts this season, while the defense behind the circle has turned 17 double plays this season – the second most in the SEC.

Freshman pitcher Sydney Berzon is this week’s SEC Freshman of the Week after throwing back-to-back complete games that resulted in a 2-0 weekend at Ole Miss. Berzon had a 0.50 ERA in 14.0 innings pitched and registered 13 strikeouts while holding the Rebels bats to a .170 batting average. In her first appearance last weekend, Berzon tossed a three-hit shutout and had a career-high 10 punchouts. The Buffalo, N.Y. native now has three shutouts on the year and ranks No. 10 in the SEC with a 1.49 ERA, No. 13 with 65 strikeouts and No. 9 with 70.2 innings pitched.

Graduate pitcher Ali Kilponen is 8-3 in the circle and has a 2.02 ERA behind 74 strikeouts (No. 10 in the SEC). Kilponen has tossed nine complete games with three shutouts, three saves, and has allowed 57 hits, 30 walks, and 27 runs over 76.1 innings. Kilponen ranks No. 10 all-time in the program’s history with 52 career wins and 436 career strikeouts.

Junior infielder Danieca Coffey leads LSU with a .431 batting average that ranks No. 5 in the SEC and leads the league with 47 hits which ranks No. 7 in the NCAA. Coffey also paces the Tigers with 27 runs scored and is currently on a five-game hitting streak entering the weekend. Junior outfielder Ciara Briggs follows with a .365 batting average and has 38 hits which sit at No. 5 in SEC.

Junior shortstop Taylor Pleasants is batting .349 with 36 RBIs (No. 3 in SEC) and has 29 hits, eight home runs, and 21 runs scored. Pleasants ranks No. 4 in the LSU record book with 37 career home runs and No. 9 all-time with 154 career RBIs.

Graduate infielder Georgia Clark has a .314 batting average with 27 hits and 25 walks. Clark has five home runs this season and has 21 RBIs. Clark ranks No. 6 all-time 35 career homers and No. 7 all-time with 114 career walks.


LSU has a 29-1 all-time record against this weekend’s tournament field, including a 3-0 record against BYU, a 4-1 record against NC State, and a 22-0 record versus Louisiana Tech, including a 3-1 victory earlier this season in Ruston, La. (Feb. 21).

BYU has won eight of its last 10 games, including a 14-11 win against Utah Tech Monday night. The Cougars are batting .293 as a team, has a 4.18 ERA, and leads the West Coast Conference with a .976 fielding percentage. BYU has five players batting over .300 this season and is led in the circle by freshman pitcher Kaysen Korth who is 9-2 in the circle with a 3.19 ERA and 96 strikeouts this season. Korth ranks No. 2 in the West Coast Conference and No. 23 in the NCAA with 9.9 strikeouts per seven innings. 

NC State is on a three-game losing after being swept by Louisville to drop to 4-8 in ACC play. The Wolfpack will play against North Carolina A&T Wednesday night before playing the Tigers Friday. NC State has a team batting average of .230 and is led by graduate outfielder Rebecca Murray’s .284 average and 27 hits. Freshman pitcher Madison Inscoe leads NC State with a team-high 80. 0 innings pitched where she has registered a 7-6 record and 3.94 ERA with 44 strikeouts. The pitching staff has a 6.06 ERA and has allowed opposing batters a .335 average.

Louisiana Tech has won two consecutive games entering the tournament and is batting .261 with a 1.71 ERA. Sophomore outfielder Sierra Sacco leads the Lady Techsters with a .344 batting average with 33 hits and 22 stolen bases. Junior outfielder Kylie Neel follows with a .323 batting average, 31 hits, and a team-high 28 RBIs. Freshman pitcher Allie Floyd leads the pitching staff with 69.0 innings pitched and 26 strikeouts to go along with her 1.72 ERA.

Per LSU Press Release