Destrehan junior Dane Simon and Hahnville junior pitcher Austin Perrin were cornerstones for their respective teams this season, each leading their squads to a high playoff seed and postseason victories. Their work didn’t go unnoticed statewide, as each has been selected for the 2016 Class 5A All-State team.
The Wildcats’ leadoff hitter, Simon led the Wildcats in batting this season with a .440 average and posted a .530 on-base percentage. He stole 19 bases and drove in 10 runs as he set the table for his team.
Destrehan coach Chris Mire called Simon “the catalyst all year long” for the Wildcats, noting that he “lived on base.”
“He has a great eye, he’s willing to get hit by a pitch, and he understands who he is as a batter,” Mire said. “He just finds a way to get on base. He’ll use the whole field. And he’s a great bunter.”
Simon’s bunting allowed him to break into the Destrehan lineup as a ninth-hitter during his sophomore season. By that season’s close, he was batting leadoff, Mire noted.
The coach also had high praise for Simon’s defensive prowess in centerfield.
“He gets unbelievable jumps on the ball. The second it comes off the bat, he takes off,” Mire said. “He’s not afraid to dive. The best part about it is (that) that’s how he practices. He’ll lay out at practice every day. It’s how he plays the game.
“He works his butt off. There’s no doubt he was our MVP and we couldn’t be prouder of him.”
Hahnville coach Davis Baudry called Simon “a very tough out” who he expects will be even tougher as a senior.
“He’s a very good hitter and an outstanding outfielder,” Baudry said. “To be MVP of our district shows the kind of player he is. He had good games against us. He was that guy that got things started for them offensively.”
Perrin went 8-2 on the mound this season, hurling for 70 innings this season and registering 89 strikeouts. He finished with a 1.19 ERA and added a save for the Tigers. Offensively, he drove in 24 runs and scored 20 and tied for the most extra-base hits on the team with nine.
“Two things really stick out about Austin,” Hahnville coach David Baudry said. “His ability to attack the strike zone with three to four different pitches and his competitive fire. He’s really a polished competitor. He’s able to keep hitters off balance from start to finish.”
Perrin had a strong season overall, but he saved his best work for last. Over his last four starts, he allowed just one earned run in total.
“He’s proficient with all four (of his) pitches, no doubt,” Baudry said. “On some days, you’re going to have it more than others, but at the end of the season, he was locked in when he threw any of them.”
He also evolved into one of the Tigers’ most productive hitters.
“He’s really turned into a good left-handed hitter with the ability to hit the ball to all fields with some pop,” Baudry said. “He’s relentless about working on all aspects of his game. Austin’s become a very tough out.”
Mire said Perrin is “not afraid to be the man when his team needs him most.”
“You know that he’s going to show up when it matters and that he’s going to make it very tough for you to beat him,” Mire said. “His ability to throw 3-to-4 pitches for strikes is rare for a high school pitcher. He possesses the ‘it’ factor that special players have.”
Destrehan’s Landon Marceaux was named 5A honorable mention.
Among softball players, Hahnville’s Maeson Martindale, Danielle Duplay, Sarah VanEtta and Pryscilla Prince and Destrehan’s Krista Robles and Gia Zeringue all were named 5A honorable mention.