Notre Dame upends Rayne; Gents fall short in playoff opener
FROM STAFF REPORTS
CROWLEY - Timmy Robichaux wasn’t surprised when the Rayne Wolves jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead over his Notre Dame Pioneers Friday.
In fact, Robichaux expected as much when he learned the Pios would be paired against their intra-parish rivals in opening round-action of the Class AAA state baseball playoffs.
“Being Rayne, a long-time rival, we figured they’d come out fired up and give us their best shot. And they did,” said Robichaux.
Undaunted, the Pios answered back with five quick runs of their own, quashing the Wolves’ momentum and setting the tone in what turned out to be an 8-2 victory Notre Dame victory.
The Pios (18-13) will now face North DeSoto, a 10-2 winner over Buckeye, in a regional-round game this week.
That game is tentatively set for Wednesday at Miller Stadium.
“I was really pleased with the way we came back,” said Robichaux, whose team could face a possible rematch with defending state champion Livonia in the quarterfinals should they win this week. “I felt secure knowing that our hitters would be able to get us back in the game.”
That they did.
Led by Nick Gossen (2-4), Connor Goss (3-3), Clint Faul (2-3) and Gavin Bourgeois (2-3), the Pios pounded out 10 hits off Rayne pitcher Tyler LeJeune.
They collected four of the hits in the bottom of the first inning when they rallied to erase Rayne’s early 2-0 lead with five runs.
Dillan Gilbert’s two-run triple gave the Pios the lead for good at 3-2, driving in Gossen and Goss. Gossen doubled to drive in Bourgois with the first run of the inning and the Pios added the final two runs on Rayne errors.
“I was really happy with the way that we performed at the plate,” said Robichaux. “Their pitcher (LeJeune) was a soft thrower; he throws a lot of breaking balls. You’re always afraid when you’re facing a guy who likes to throw a lot of curves.
“But we did a good job for what we were faced with.”
The Pios made it 6-2 in the fourth inning when Faul singled and scored on a grounder to third by Gossen.
In the sixth, they put the game away, adding two more runs. Faul started the inning off with a singl.e. After Brad Stoma reached base on a bunt, Bourgeois sacrificed the pair to second and third, setting up a two-RBI single by Gossen.
Gossen was also the winning pitcher, settling down after giving up two runs and two hits in the third inning to finish with a 5-hitter. He walked five and struck out eight.
LeJeune went 6 1/3 innings for the Wolves, giving up eight runs and 10 hits. He struck out two.
Gents fall in extra innings
BRUSLY – The Crowley Gents gave No. 14-seed Brusly all they could handle Friday in the first round of the Class 3A playoffs.
The Gents, seeded No. 19, rallied twice to tie the game at 3-3 after seven innings but Brusly plated the winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning on a throwing error to claim a 4-3 victory.
Bradley Ancelet suffered the loss after giving up one run on no hits and two walks in the final two frames.
Taylor Doughty worked the first seven innings and allowed three runs on seven hits and two walks. He struck out seven.
Brody Deshotel led the Gents with three hits while Luke Ancelet had two. Mickey Morgan and Mackay Mouton each had one hit and one RBI while Doughty and Bradley Ancelet each had a single.
The Gents finished the season with a record of 11-17.