MATHEWS – Central Lafourche and Houma Christian needed an extra inning Monday afternoon to settle their back-and-forth softball battle.
The Lady Warriors scored twice in the top of eighth. However, the Lady Trojans pushed across three runs in the bottom half, including the game-winning RBI single from Lela Billiot, to prevail 10-9.
Kinslee Ross earned the win with a strikeout, allowing two hits and five walks in three innings of relief. Michaela Rowsey took the complete-game loss with four strikeouts permitting 13 hits and six walks.
“That’s the best game we’ve played all year. I’m proud of the kids,” Lady Trojans coach Daniel Robichaux said. “They didn’t give up. Everybody played well. I know they’re all happy.”
“We played well in spurts, but we didn’t play well the entire game,” Lady Warriors coach Christi Crowdus said. “We came out very flat to start the game. They fought hard in the end, but we made costly mistakes. Each error that we made cost us runs.”
Houma Christian (15-8 overall) had a chance to go ahead in the seventh inning. With runners on second and third bases, Madelyn Carlos tried to score on Ross’s wild pitch. However, Lady Trojan catcher Megan Caro quickly recovered the ball and tossed it to Ross who tagged Carlos out.
Then Xariel Washington got caught in a rundown between third base and home, where Caro tagged to her to keep the game tied at 7.
“Those were just good plays by the girls. I don’t always expect that, but they’re starting to grow up,” Robichaux said.
“Maddie did a good job reading the pass ball. Games like this we want to be aggressive, and unfortunately, it didn’t go our way,” Crowdus said. “The other one was a base running mistake. We had a couple of base running mistakes that cost us.”
Houma Christian took a 9-7 lead in the eighth as Cloe DeHart scored on a wild pitch, and with the bases loaded, Ross hit a batter to score Jayda Ward.
Central Lafourche (3-15) pounded five hits in the bottom of the frame. Brianna Hernandez (4-for-4) led off with a double. McKenzie Champagne (3-for-5, RBI) single plated Hernandez, and Caro’s double scored Champagne to tie the game. Then with the bases loaded, Billiot smacked a single over the centerfielder’s head to bring home Caro for the victory.
“I saw the fire in their eyes when they came into the dugout. They wanted it,” Robichaux said. “They hit the ball well. They all stepped up. I’m as happy as can be.”
“Michaela has been our best pitcher all year. She’s pitched a lot for us, and I think it showed at the end,” Crowdus said. “She’s a fighter, and I felt like for us to have a chance to win I had to keep her in the mound.”
Houma Christian staked a 2-0 lead in the first when Lady Trojan starting pitcher Elise White plunked consecutive batters with the bases loaded.
Central Lafourche tied it in the bottom half as Hernandez scored on an error, and Champagne came across during a double play. The Lady Trojans took a 3-2 lead in the second when Bethany Babin plated on an error.
The Lady Warriors regained the advantage in the fourth. Magen Fregeau’s single brought home Sydney Bourgeois, and Alaya Luke scored on an error. In the fifth, Ward scored on a groundout for a 5-3 lead.
Central Lafourche reclaimed the lead 6-5 in the bottom half as Hernandez and Champagne plated on an error. Then Jada Matherne tagged up on fly out in foul territory.
In the sixth, Katelyn Guidry (1-for-2, two RBIs) slapped a two-run single to give Houma Christian a 7-6 lead. The Lady Trojans tied it in the bottom half when Jayden Marks plated on a fielder’s choice.
With only a few weeks left in the season, both coaches believe Monday’s non-district game will be a turning point for their squads.
“They get down on themselves a lot. A win like this, coming back like they did, maybe this will pick them up,” Robichaux said. “Hopefully, they’ll learn from this. We have a big game (today) against Hahnville. They’re No. 1 in the state.”
“We have to be able to finish a game. That’s something we’ve been preaching to them all year, and it’s something we’ve struggled with all season,” Crowdus said. “Hopefully, this is going to wake them up because know this is going to hurt us in the rankings for seeding in our division.”
MONDAY’S PREP SOFTBALL CAPSULE
SOUTH LAFOURCHE 13, COVENANT CHRISTIAN ACADEMY 3, 5 innings (at Galliano, nondistrict game)
Batting leaders: South Lafourche — Liz Curole (inside the park home run, triple), Makayla Bynum (inside the park home run, single), Claire Chiasson (triple, double, single), Emily Danos (two double, single) and Liza Derosia, Taylor Toups, Allie Hendrix and Caroline Curole all had singles; CCA — Ciara Desmore (two RBIs), Zoee LeBouef (2-for-3, RBI).
Pitching leader: South Lafourche — Jenna Eymard (winning pitcher, five walks, two hits) and Claire Chiasson (save, two strikeouts, one walk, three hits); CCA — Adelle Chauvin (1 1/3 innings, four hits, four runs, three earned runs, two walks) and Zoee LeBouef (three innings, nine hits, nine runs, six earned runs, three strikeouts, three walks).
Records: South Lafourche (9-10 overall); CCA (4-16 overall).
--Compiled by Staff Writer Chris Singleton