NCS Warriors fall short in extra innings
MONROE – Northside Christian was three outs away from reaching the Class C state semifinals for the first time in the school’s history Saturday.
The Warriors (14-8) led 2-1 heading into the bottom of the seventh inning of their quarterfinal matchup with Claiborne Christian at West Monroe’s Shelby Aulds Field and a victory was just a few outs away.
But Claiborne rallied to tie the game and Zach Osbon delivered a walk-off home run three innings later, giving the host Crusaders a dramatic 3-2 victory and ending the Warriors’ dreams.
The Warriors stranded 11 runners on the day, including three in the top of the 10th inning. Overall, they left nine runners in scoring position.
Northside jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first inning when Shea Bertrand walked and scored on a groundout by Christian Morgan.
Claiborne answered with a single run in the second inning when Heath Eubanks logged a two-out triple and scored on an error.
Joseph Trahan gave the Warriors a 2-1 advantage with a leadoff home run in the fourth inning.
Eubanks walked in the bottom of the seventh and scored the tying run on a one-out double by eighth grader Drake Purdy.
Osbon also picked up the victory on mound after giving up two runs on six hits and six walks. He struck out 13 in 10 innings.
Trahan suffered the loss after surrendering four hits and four walks while striking out nine, also in 10 innings.
Nick Zaunbrecher led the Warriors with two hits while Trahan, Dillon King, Kenneth Earles and Nick Martin each had one.