Destrehan baseball reels off five straight

Lady Wildcats continue tough district schedule

Special to the Herald-Guide
March 26, 2009 at 9:29 am  | Mobile Reader | Pring this storyPrint 

Pitching junior Kurt McCune saved two games last weekend and hit a grand slam on Sunday.
Photo by Joe Paul
Pitching junior Kurt McCune saved two games last weekend and hit a grand slam on Sunday.
By Joe Paul

After dropping a tough 5-3 contest to Northshore in the Wildcat home opener last Tuesday, Destrehan was in search of a victory to end its losing streak.

The Wildcats found their winning form against Rummel at home the following day with a 4-2 victory, reeling off three more wins during the weekend and defeating Central Baton Rouge 3-0 Monday night in Hammond.

Head coach Marty Luquet said his team's recent surge couldn't have come at a better time considering Destrehan travels to Hahnville today for both team's 6-5A openers starting at 4 p.m.

"It was very important because if it had gone the other way, it might have been devastating to us," Luquet said. "We know that we can play with some of the best teams in the state."

Participating in the Gerard Oubre Memorial Tournament, Destrehan (7-9-1) defeated Brother Martin 6-4 Friday, beat Jesuit 7-3 Saturday and edged Holy Cross 7-6 Sunday.

The Brother Martin victory came just one week after the Wildcats fell to the Crusaders, 6-3.

After falling behind 1-0, the Wildcats exploded for five runs in the bottom on the first despite the team only mustering two hits the entire game. Senior Patrick Roth blasted a solo home run in the bottom of the fifth providing some insurance. Junior Dylan Lucich got the win in relief, while junior Kurt McCune pitched the final two innings for the save.

Against Jesuit, senior Hunter Tyree went the distance allowing three earned runs and six hits en route to a 7-3 victory. All seven Destrehan runs were plated in the fourth inning.

Junior Sam Carriere and McCune each had two RBIs in the inning while senior Joshua Rochelle, junior Matt Smith and senior Devin Stewart each drove in a run.

Sunday's game against Holy Cross was a true battle as the Wildcats scored the winning run in the top of the seventh to gain a 7-6 victory.

With two outs in the seventh, Holy Cross' Joe Broussard walked two straight and hit another to load the bases.

Rochelle stole home as Broussard's high pitch got by the catcher. Destrehan took the lead without a play. McCune got the final five outs earning the victory.

The Wildcats fell behind early 3-0, but rallied when McCune belted a grand slam in the third. Rochelle belted one of his two solo home runs later that inning giving Destrehan a 5-3 lead.

Rochelle homered again in the fifth to up the Wildcat margin to 6-4 before Holy Cross tied the game heading into the final inning. Seven different Destrehan batters hit safely in the game. Senior Andrew Suffrin reached base all four times.

The Wildcats will open 6-5A play against Hahnville on the West Bank beginning at 4 p.m. today and will host St. Amant at 2 p.m. Saturday.

"The thing about playing Hahnville is that everybody runs out every ground ball and chases every pop up," Luquet said. "That is what makes it fun. That is why we enjoy it so much."

When Destrehan takes the field today for the team's softball home finale against Hahnville, the Lady Wildcats will be looking for a measure of revenge.

Earlier this season, the Lady Tigers managed a 5-4, eight-inning win on the West Bank to open 6-5A play, but Destrehan head coach Jacob Thompson said he thinks today's game will be different.

"I think that going into the first game, Hahnville underestimated our ability, but I don't think that they are going to make that mistake again especially now that Hahnville is undefeated in district," he said. "We have got to execute defensively. We can't make those little errors that have cost us the past couple of weeks."

Last week, the Lady Wildcats (6-11, 1-3 6-5A) notched their first district win with a 7-0 shutout against East St. John before falling to East Ascension 6-0 Thursday and Belle Chase 12-2 Saturday. Against East St. John, Destrehan got seven shutout innings from senior Desiree Harvey, who struck out 13.

"My pitcher had a great day. The kids hit the ball and played well. They really meshed together in that game," Thompson said.

Against East Ascension, the Lady Wildcats suffered through some bloop hits and one bad inning where errors allowed the Lady Spartans to pull away. Offensively, Destrehan suffered striking out 10 times. Saturday against Belle Chase, the story was much the same as six Lady Wildcat errors helped the Lady Cardinals score a dozen runs while Destrehan struggled at the plate with double-digit strikeouts again.

One pleasant surprise this season defensively has been the play of sophomore first baseman Hannah Asprodities, who has only two errors.

"She has been very consistent at first all season. I don't even have to look to see if she is going to catch it or not because it is pretty much automatic," Thompson said.

Destrehan hosted Dutchtown Tuesday and finished up its home schedule against Hahnville today at 4 p.m. This weekend, the Lady Wildcats will play in the John Curtis Tournament at the JPRD field beginning Friday. They will take on John Curtis at 4:30 p.m. Friday, Chapelle at 9 a.m. Saturday followed by Hannan at 1:30 p.m. and Houma Christian at 6 p.m.

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