The 9th-ranked Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns continue their fast start to the 2021 college softball season.

Louisiana won its home-opener on Tuesday night, defeating the Eastern Illinois Panthers, 9-0, in five-inning mercy-rule fashion in a non-conference game at Yvette Girouard Field at Lamson Park.

The Cajuns homered three times in the contest, including two by Ciara Bryan and one by Julie Rawls to lift them to the 9-0 win.

The win extended UL's season-opening win streak to five games, and their overall win streak to nine games, dating back to last season.

The Cajuns have now outscored the opposition, 26-5, to open the 2021 campaign.

For Eastern Illinois, the setback was the first in five games this season.

Louisiana got on the scoreboard first, breaking open a scoreless softball game with six runs on eight hits in the bottom half of the third inning.

Bryan had the highlight of the frame, blasting a two-run home run, her first of the season and first as a Cajun, helping the Cajuns to a 6-0 lead.

The Cajuns widened their lead in the bottom half of the 4th inning when Bryan did it again, crushing a solo home run, her second of the game, to make it 7-0, before Rawls belted a two-run homer, her first of the season, to make it 9-0.

That was all UL would need, as they went on to the 9-0, five-inning, mercy-rule triumph.

Louisiana, who outhit Eastern Illinois, 12-3, was led at the plate by Bryan, who homered twice, as well as Rawls, who homered once.

Casey Dixon (1-0) recorded the win in the circle for the Cajuns, tossing four innings of three-hit shutout softball.

Jade Montgomery (2-1) suffered the loss for the Panthers, allowing one run on two hits over 2.0 innings pitched.

View the game box score.

With the victory, Louisiana improved to 5-0 on the young season, while Eastern Illinois dropped to 4-1.

The Cajuns return to action on Wednesday night, hosting McNeese St. in a non-conference single game at Yvette Girouard Field at Lamson Park.

First-pitch is slated for 6 o'clock.

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