Doughty's Gents hitting stride at right time

CROWLEY – Just two short weeks ago the Crowley Gents’ baseball team was on the outside looking in when it came to the District 4-AAA race.

Errors and a lack of run support contributed to two key one-run losses to Eunice and Iowa and had the Gents in third place in the league standings.

My, how things have changed!

The Gents have rebounded since their 5-4 loss to Iowa on March 29 with six straight victories, making tonight’s rematch with Class AAA’s No. 4 ranked Yellow Jackets a pivotal one for both teams.

“We have really come around,” said CHS coach Christian Doughty following Tuesday’s 15-2 victory over Iota. “We’ve had some guys really step up. The meat of our (batting) order, three through about seven, has been tearing it up and, hopefully, we can continue that.”

Senior utility player Brian Broussard has led the offensive charge for the Gents, collecting 13 hits in the last six outings, including three doubles, two triples and 13 RBI. Tyler Dupuis follows close behind with 12 hits (3 doubles, 12 RBI) while Taylor Bertrand, Brody Deshotel and Chad Hoffpauir each have eight hits and combined for four doubles and 12 RBI.

Crowley has scored 77 runs during their streak and Doughty is hoping that his squad’s offensive success as of late carries over to tonight’s showdown with the league-leading Yellow Jackets.

“We know that they (Iowa) have strong pitching, they always do,” said Doughty. “We will have our hands full, but, hopefully, we can show up, swing at good pitches and hope for good things to happen.”

Crowley’s pitching rotation is stout as well.

Senior hurler Justin Desselle will get the start tonight and will be looking to avenge that one-run loss to Iowa two weeks ago. In that contest he gave up five runs on six hits and four walks while striking out eight in six innings.

“Justin had such a good outing against Eunice and we’re hoping for a similar performance tomorrow,” said Doughty of Desselle, who struck out 12 Bobcats last week in a 9-3 victory. “If he can throw strikes...I think the biggest thing for us is that we will have to limit our mistakes. We’ll have to play error-free baseball. If we can do that, I think we stand a good shot.”

Crowley’s Jake Trahan will be in the wings, ready to take the mound if needed. The senior shortstop leads the team in victories with five and also has two saves to his credit.

“We’ve tried to approach both the Eunice and Iowa games with having both Justin and Jake ready to go,” said Doughty. “Jake has been pitching well and he’ll definitely be in relief.”

Should Crowley’s pitching and hitting hold up, the Gents could find themselves right back in the hunt for the league title, a spot Doughty and his team had planned on being in from the start.

“Our goal from the beginning of the year was to be in contention for the district title so this is a big game for us,” said Doughty. “We feel like we’ve put ourselves in that position and we’re really excited about that. With a win we’d be one game back with Eunice left to play Iowa. You never know what could happen.”

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