Block, WCCA come up short, but Centreville wins

Published 12:23 am Friday, April 25, 2008

BATON ROUGE — Despite facing a Christian Life team that is ranked No. 8 in Class 1A and seeded No. 10 in the Class 1A State Playoffs, the Block Bears were not intimidated.

Unfortunately, Block couldn’t hold on to a 2-0 lead after four innings of play as the Bears had their season come to an end with a 5-2 loss to the Crusaders Thursday afternoon in the bi-district round.

“My kids played an excellent ball game,” Block head coach Stevie McCarthy said. “We played four teams in the top 10 in 1A. These boys have played their hearts out.”

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Block starting pitcher Casey Ryan and reliever Justin Winborne did their part to give the Bears a chance to pull off the upset by combining on a three-hitter. Ryan struck out six and allowed just two hits in four and two-thirds innings and Winborne gave up just one hit and struck out four in one and one-third inning.

“Casey has been out for five weeks with a broken arm. That showed me a lot of heart,” McCarthy said. “I’m real pleased with him. Justin shut them down. He will be back next year.”

Block (14-11-1), the No. 23 seed, scored its first run in the top of the third inning as an error allowed Winborne to score. Then in the top of the fourth Derrick Adams walked and Christian Wiggins pinch ran for him. Ladarrius Collins hit a triple off Calandro that scored Wiggins to give the Bears a 2-0 lead.

But Calandro went to the curveball in the final three innings and Block never could make the adjustments. And that helped keep the Crusaders in the game until they could finally get something going at the plate.

Christian Life (21-6) took advantage of several miscues by Block’s defense to score its five runs in the bottom of the fifth inning that gave the Crusaders the lead for good.

Centreville Academy 6, Simpson Academy 3

CENTREVILLE — Despite having a torn meniscus and a strained MCL, eighth-grader Hunter Devall struck out 10 batters in five innings to help the Tigers stay alive in the Class AA South State Playoffs Thursday night.

Centreville (11-17), the District 5-AA runner-up, scored all six of its runs in the bottom of the fourth inning. The key hits for the Tigers were a two-run single by Eric Noland and a two-out, two-run bloop single by Devall.

“We got some timely hits in the fourth,” Centreville head coach Jason Horne said. “We played well defensively and pitched well throughout the game.”

Chase Wilkins pitched the final two innings for the Tigers, giving up two runs in the top of the seventh and he struck out three to pick up the save.

With the series now tied at a game apiece, the third and deciding game of this first-round series between the Tigers and the Cougars will shift back to Mendenhall today at 6 p.m.

Glenbrook 10, WCCA 3

WOODVILLE — Behind the pitching of J. Byrd and some timely hits, Glenbrook (16-6) rallied from an early 3-0 deficit to defeat WCCA (20-10) and tie the first-round Class A South State Playoffs series at 1-1.

After allowing three runs on four hits in the bottom of the first inning on an RBI single by George Davis and a two-run single by Brennan Bush, Byrd allowed just one hit and struck out 10 in a complete-game performance.

“We jumped out 3-0 and we’re feeling good. In the third, they picked up two runs on an error,” WCCA head coach Ray Olive said. “Sutton’s arm was tired in the fourth. He walked the bases loaded. Mix that in with an error and a couple of base hits and they’ve got a big inning. Their pitcher, a left-hander, did an excellent job from that point.”

The big inning coach Olive referred to was the four-run rally by the Apaches that gave them a 6-3 lead.

They added three runs in the top of the sixth and one in the top of the seventh.

The series-deciding Game 3 of the series will take place at Glenbrook in Minden, La. today at 4 p.m.