Northside Christian upends Plainview

CROWLEY - Northside Christian’s main objective heading into Thursday’s District 5-C contest against 3-13 Plainview was to conserve pitching and slip away with a victory without having to use standout hurlers Joseph Trahan and Josh Wheeler.

Mission accomplished.

Despite combining for nine walks, Northside’s Jordan Monte and Jon-Riley Mouton limited the Hornets to just three hits as the Warriors cruised to a 15-5, six-inning victory at Miller Stadium.

The Warriors improved to 7-5 overall and 4-1 in league play with the victory heading into Tuesday’s showdown at No. 4 Elizabeth.

“We wanted to come in here without having to pitch our two top pitchers,” said Northside coach Lane Marceaux following the victory. “We wanted to give them some rest and we felt confident that we could get the job done with Jordan and Joh-Riley.

“Jordan struggled early on with a few walks, but we got by and Jon-Riley came in at the end and did a good job.”

Monte walked eight in the first four innings but he limited the Hornets to just three hits and five runs.

Mouton took the mound in the fifth inning and faced just six batters in the final two frames. He walked one and struck out two. The lone baserunner Mouton allowed was erased when NCS catcher Nick Zaunbrecher caught Austin James straying too far off third base and picked him off for the final out of the fifth inning.

“Jon-Riley came in and really did a good job,” said Marceaux. “We wanted to get him on the mound and he did a job of shutting them down.”

Offensively, Northside struggled early against Plainview’s Trey Cloud. The Warriors logged just six hits off the soft-throwing right hander in the first five innings.

Fortunately, those six hits were sandwiched between 14 free passes (13 walks and one hit-by-pitch), allowing the Warriors to score 13 runs.

“We had so many walks, we didn’t have the opportunity to really string some hits together,” said Marceaux. “And not to take anything away from their pitching, but it’s tough to hit someone like that when the velocity isn’t what you’re used to seeing. But I thought the guys did a good job of adjusting later in the game.”

The Warriors finished the day with eight hits, two of which were from Trahan. The sophomore had two doubles and drove in one run. Ben Morgan also had two hits, both singles, and one RBI. Zaunbrecher drove in two runs on a single while Monte, Mouton and Nick Martin each had one hit and one RBI.

Cloud had two of Plainview’s three hits and drove in two runs. John Ash had one hit and an RBI and Tyler Thomas drove in a run when he was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded.

“Today wasn’t our best game,” said Marceaux, whose Warriors defeated Plainview 18-3 in the first meeting between the two teams. “I think we were maybe looking ahead to next week’s game against Elizabeth. But, a win is a win and we’ll take it. And it’s a district win so that’s big.”

Northside, Class C’s No. 8-ranked team, returns to action Tuesday when they travel to Elizabeth to take on the Bulldogs at 5 p.m.

Elizabeth rallied for a 5-4 victory over Northside at Miller Stadium two weeks ago in the first round of district play.

“We have to go over there and play a lot better than we did today,” said Marceaux of Tuesday’s game. “But we will have both of our top pitchers rested so we should be okay. I just hope we can come back and start hitting.”

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