Lady Pios crush Rayville in playoff opener
Notre Dame’s Zoie Lavergne fires a pitch to the plate Tuesday during the Lady Pios’ 16-0 victory over Rayville at Hensgens Park. (Photo by Jason Faul)
CROWLEY – Playing down to the level of your opponent is always a concern for higher seeds once the playoffs begin.
It certainly was for Notre Dame coach Dusty Collette when his No. 4-seeded Lady Pios played host to No. 29 Rayville Tuesday.
But those proved to be unwarranted and they proved to be early.
The Lady Pios (20-5) scored three runs in the first inning and added 13 in the second to walk away with a 16-0 victory in 2 1/2 innings.
“Sometimes, you have a tendency to overlook certain teams and I was just hoping we weren’t going to fall into that trap,” said Collette, whose squad will play host to St. Charles Friday at 5 p.m. in a Class AAA regional contest. “We talked about that heading into the game and our girls came out and took control early.”
The Lady Pios collected three hits in the first inning before sending 17 batters to the plate in the second frame. They logged six singles, four triples and three doubles off Rayville’s starting pitcher while pushing across 13 runs.
“When we face a pitcher that isn’t the quality that we have been facing, I find we tend to get away from our mechanics. But that wasn’t the case today,” said Collette. “Their pitcher was decent and she threw some good balls, but I thought after we went through the lineup the first time, we settled down and had a lot better swings and better approaches at the plate.
“We hit the ball,” he continued. “In the playoffs, you can’t get away from your mechanics. You have to have smart at-bats and have good approaches at the plate and I thought we did that today, top to bottom.”
On the pitching side, Zoie Lavergne faced just 11 batters in three innings and gave up one hit and one walk in earning the victory.
Lavergne got the starting nod over Mollie Stelly who is recovering from a leg injury.
“Zoie did a heck of a job out there today,” said Collette. “With Mollie’s knee kind of bothering her, we didn’t want to push her. She would have been ready if needed, but we have all the confidence in the world in Zoie. She has a lot of experience and with both of them (Stelly and Lavergne), it’s basically like having two No. 1’s, so we’re very blessed.”
The Lady Pios gave Lavergne all the run support she need in the first inning when Grace Doucet doubled in two runs. Lavergne then helped her own cause with a sacrifice fly to give her team a 3-0 advantage.
Things only got worse for the visitors one inning later.
Harley Bellard, Alli Daigle, Mima Doucet, Taylor Satchell and Grace Doucet each pounded out two hits in the second frame.
The Doucet sisters, Grace and Mima, combined to go 6-for-6 on the day. Grace, who was celebrating her 17th birthday, had three hits, including a triple and four RBI while Mima had three hits and two RBI.
“Grace and Mima are both really good athletes and they have produced throughout the season,” said Collette. “They are very consistent hitters and they don’t strike out much. They put the ball in play.”
Satchell added a double, a triple and two RBI while Daigle had a pair of singles and two RBI. Elise LeBeouf followed with two hits, including a triple and an RBI; Bellard singled, doubled and drove in one; Stelly tripled in a run; Brittney Nolan had an RBI double and Lavergne logged an RBI.