Iowa downs error-plagued Gents

IOWA – If it weren’t for errors, Crowley High’s Gents would probably be in contention for the District 4-3A championship.

Instead, the Gents are in the middle of the pack and hoping to keep their playoff hopes alive.

Tuesday’s District 4-3A showdown with the Iowa Yellow Jackets was another example of how the 2012 season has gone for the Gents thus far.

Iowa scored four unearned runs, courtesy of four CHS errors in the third inning, and held on for a 6-4 victory at the Yellow Jackets’ home diamond.

With the loss, the Gents fell to 9-12 overall and 3-4 in league play while the Yellow Jackets improved to 14-8 and 3-3.

“We just didn’t get it done defensively tonight,” said CHS coach Christian Doughty following the loss. “You can’t beat anyone when you make four errors in one inning. If I’m not mistaken, the ball didn’t leave the infield except once in that inning. You just can’t get it done like that.”

The Gents trailed just 2-1 entering the bottom of the third, but four errors gave the Yellow Jackets some breathing room.

Back-to-back errors to start the frame set the tone before a bunt single by Garrett Dartez and loaded the bases for the Yellow Jackets. Another error on the infield allowed the first run to cross the plate and then a throw to the plate to get the lead runner was dropped.

Two batters later, Tanner Buller made the Gents pay with a two-run single to left field to put Iowa up 6-1.

“I thought we got good pitching tonight, but we just didn’t back our pitchers on defense,” said Doughty, whose starting pitcher Mackay Mouton was tagged with the loss. “All a pitcher can do is throw to a location and the defense has to play. When you make four errors in one inning, you can’t expect to win.”

Despite the errors, the Gents gave themselves a chance to win.

Crowley cut the lead to 6-3 in the fifth inning on RBI singles from Bradley Ancelet and Steven Bertrand.

Back-to-back hits by Nathan Richard and Taylor Doughty to start the seventh inning gave Crowley new life. Richard scored on a one-out single to left by Brody Deshotel before a walk to Bertrand loaded the bases.

The rally was short lived though.

Mouton’s grounder to shortstop one batter later resulted in a game-ending double play.

“I was proud of our guys for not giving up,” said Doughty. “We were down 6-1 at one point and we fought to come back. With a timely hit in the seventh, we could have tied it. We strung some hits together there and I thought we were really going to have a shot. Mackay hit the ball hard and that’s all we can ask for. He just happened to hit it into a double play.”

Mouton allowed six runs (two earned) on five hits and one walk. He struck out one in three innings.

Kaleb Cormier took the mound for the Gents in the fourth and limited the Yellow Jackets to one hit and two walks while striking out two the rest of the way.

“I was very pleased with Kaleb’s performance,” said Doughty. “For someone who hasn’t thrown in a while, to come in and give us three solid innings was big. I thought he did a very good job.”

Iowa’s Phillip LeBleu was credited with the victory after giving up three runs on six hits and one walk. He struck out nine in five innings.

Justin DeMary gave up one run on three hits and one walk in the final two frames to earn the save.

Offensively, the Gents were led by Ancelet with two hits and two RBI. Deshotel also had two hits and drove in one run.

Doughty and Richard each had two singles and Bertrand rounded out the Gents’ offensive attack with an RBI single.

Buller had one hit and two RBI for the Yellow Jackets while DeMary had a home run and Austin Theriot had an RBI single. LeBleu, Roberts, Andrew Self and Brad Whittington each had one hit.

The Gents return to action tonight when they play host to South Beauregard at 6 p.m.

“With South Beauregard coming in, that’s a big one for us,” said Doughty. “Even with this loss, we’re still in it. We need a W so we go into the last week and still be in the thick of things.”

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