SMC tops MC for district championship
St. Mary Central’s 12-year-old All-Stars clinched the District 3 Championship Monday night with an 8-6 win against Morgan City in a winner-take-all game. Team members include, kneeling, from left, Reed Gonzales, Johnny Hamrick, Eric Guillot, Hunter, Landry, Seth Canty and Zeph DeLatte. On the middle row, from left, are Devin Leblanc, Zeph Hoffpauir, Shayne Berger, Dayton Clark, Evan Thomas and Kyle Valdez. On the back row, from left, are coaches Jeff Landry, Joe Guillot and Mike DeLatte. (The Daily Review/Photos by Michelle Blanc)
The Morgan City 12-year-old All-Stars finished as the District 3 runner-up. After defeating St. Mary Central 7-1 in the first game to force a winner-take-all contest, Morgan City fell in the finale 8-6. Team members include, kneeling from left, Dylan Tingle, Grant Stansbury, Kyle Ring, Luke Barbier, Phillip Guarisco and Ryan Miller. On the middle row, from left, are William LaRocca, Nathan Hebb, Trent Hillen, Cade Booty, Michael Anthony Hill and Taylor Blanchard. On the back row, from left, are head coach James Stansbury and assistant coaches Chad Miller and Dwayne Barbier.
St. Mary Central 12-year-old All-Stars rallied to beat a scrappy Morgan City squad 8-6 in the winner-take-all District 3 championship game Monday.
Morgan City forced the finale by beating St. Mary Central 7-1 in the first game behind a stellar pitching performance by Trent Hillen. Hillen tossed a complete game three-hitter with nine strikeouts. He also walked three.
In the first game, Morgan City took a 2-0 lead in the first inning stringing together four hits.
St. Mary Central answered in the top of the second when Seth Canty tripled and scored on a single by Eric Guillot. Morgan City extended its lead in the third inning when Phillip Guarisco singled with the bases loaded, scoring two runs for a 4-1 lead.
In the fifth, Morgan City broke the game open.
St. Mary Central pulled starting pitcher Zeph Delatte, who suffered the loss, and replaced him with Kyle Valdez. Morgan City connected on five hits off Valdez to take a 7-1 lead.
Hillen closed out the game for Morgan City to force the winner-take-all game two.
“We played well,” Morgan City coach James Stansbury said. “We got momentum on our side, and we were able to force a second game.”
Morgan City had to defeat St. Mary Central twice to win the district championship, because Morgan City dropped its opener of the tournament to Patterson, 9-8, Friday. St. Mary Central had to win just one game.
“I told the guys that (they) needed to liven up,” St. Mary Central coach Mike DeLatte said. “They were flat. I told them they were flat in batting practice. But kudos to Morgan City. They hit the ball well, and they beat us.”
In game 1, Luke Barbier, Hillen, Guarisco and Taylor Blanchard all finished 2-for-3, while William LaRocca, Michael-Anthony Hill, Cade Booty, Grant Stansbury and Dylan Tingle each had a hit.
For St. Mary Central, DeLatte pitched four innings and surrendered four runs on eight hits with five strikeouts.
Offensively, Guillot finished 2-for-2 with an RBI to lead St. Mary Central.
Other contributors included Valdez, 1-for-1; and Hunter Landry and Canty, each 1-for-2.
Morgan City carried its momentum into the finale, jumping out to a 6-1 lead.
Nathan Hebb had the big hit, a two-run home run, in the second.
But in the bottom of the fourth, St. Mary Central started chipping away at Morgan City’s lead.
“(Luke) Barbier was amazing early in the game,” DeLatte said. “We were hoping to get him off the rubber, and we finally got to him.”
St. Mary Central’s Shane Berger doubled to score a run, cutting the lead to 6-2.
With runners on second and third with two outs, Morgan City’s defense committed two errors that enabled St. Mary Central to continue its comeback and cut the Morgan City advantage to 6-4.
Zeph DeLatte added an RBI single to bring St. Mary Central within a run at 6-5.
Morgan City pulled starter Luke Barbier for Nathan Hebb with runners at first and second with two outs. Hebb walked the first batter he faced, Johnny Hamrick, to load the bases.
But Morgan City catcher Phillp Guarisco caught a base runner off the bag at first and threw him out.
In the bottom of the fifth, Valdez blasted a solo home run to tie the game at 6.
“We had some clutch hits, and none was bigger than Kyle’s home run,” DeLatte said.
St. Mary Central’s bats came alive, and after a throwing error, St. Mary Central took the lead for the first time, 7-6.
St. Mary Central’s big inning continued with an RBI single by Guillot for an 8-6 St. Mary Central lead.
“We took our foot off the gas,” Stansbury said. “We had a chance to stay on top, but we just didn’t see it through. Baseball is a six-inning game, and you have to play all six innings, all 18 outs, and we didn’t do that tonight.”
Morgan City could not answer in the sixth, and St. Mary Central captured the District 3 championship.
Landry and Valdez were among the top hitters for St. Mary Central as Landry finished 3-for-3 with two doubles, while Valdez was 1-for-3 with a home run and an RBI.
Other top contributors included Guillot, 2-for-3, an RBI; Shayne Berger, 1-for-2, a double and two RBIs; Hoffpauir, 1-for-1, an RBI; DeLatte, 1-for-2, an RBI; and Canty, 1-for-3.
Hoffpauir earned the win for St. Mary. In a complete-game effort, he surrendered six runs on nine hits with three walks and fanned eight.
Barbier and Guarisco each finished 2-for-3 for Morgan City, while Hebb was 1-for-2 with a two-run home run.
Booty, Hillen, Hill and Kyle Ring each had a hit.
Hebb suffered the loss on the mound for Morgan City.
As the district champion, St. Mary Central advances to the South Regional in Metairie and will begin play Friday at 5 p.m.
Morgan City advances to the North Regional in Franklin and will play Friday at 1 p.m.
Patterson finishes 1-2 at district tournament.
The Patterson 12-year-old All-Stars finished 1-2 at the District 3 Tournament with a 9-8 win against Morgan City and losses to St. Mary Central, 14-2 in five innings; and Morgan City, 10-0 in four innings.
In Friday’s win, Kai Schexnayder was a triple shy of hitting for the cycle. Schexnayder led Patterson with a 4-for-4 performance with a home run, a double, two singles and four RBIs.
Blaze Mayon, who finished 2-for-4, recorded the game-winning RBI for Patterson in the bottom of the sixth inning.
Other contributors included Joseph Larson, 4-for-4, a double and two RBIs; Jason Burgess, 2-for-3; Chad LaGrange, 1-for-4, an RBI; Louis Jones, 1-for-2; and Reid Perkins and Garrett Hotard, each 1-for-4.
Larson earned the win in an inning of relief.
Hotard started for Patterson and surrendered three walks and fanned three in two innings.
In three innings of relief, Perkins pitched three innings and surrendered a walk, four hits and fanned two.
On Saturday against St. Mary Central, Perkins, Schexnayder and Jones each finished 1-for-2.
On the mound, Hotard suffered the loss as he surrendered six runs on six hits with four walks and strikeouts apiece.
On Sunday against Morgan City, Mayon and Dylan Blanchard each finished 1-for-1, while Perkins was 1-for-2.
Starting pitcher Kai Schexnayder suffered the loss as he surrendered one hit (a three-run home run) and two walks before being replace with no outs in the first inning.
In relief, Perkins tossed four innings and surrendered two runs on five hits with three walks and fanned six.
Additional reporting by Review Sports Editor Geoff Stoute