Cathedral loses 2 games to Silliman, comes up short in series title

Published 12:33 am Thursday, May 19, 2016

CLINTON, La. — Cathedral High School baseball is 18-2 in its previous 20 games, but its two losses came on the same day in May.

Silliman Institute hit two walk-off home runs Wednesday night in Clinton, La., to clinch the first MAIS AAA title. Silliman took Game 2, 5-2, on a three-run homer from Brian Siebert, and Tyler LeJeune launched a two-run homer to run-rule the Green Wave 12-1 in five innings.

Silliman won the game after losing the series opener Monday night in Natchez, 4-2.

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“We have a special group of kids,” Silliman coach John Ryan Beauchamp said. “After the loss the other night, I knew we still had a chance to do it. Last year was special and this group has achieved so much. The desire to win was there and the belief in one another was awesome. The brotherhood was there (Wednesday).”

One game was not like the other for Cathedral. Game 3 started as a laser show for Silliman as the first three Wildcat batters reached base and eventually scored. Cathedral senior Reed White picked up teammate Pate Shirley by getting the final out in the first inning. Shirley pitched just 0.2 innings, allowing five earned runs on six hits. White was able to fill up the zone for Cathedral in 3.1 innings, holding Silliman to two earned runs on five hits.

Cathedral’s bats could not raise the Green Wave from the mat. Cathedral managed just three hits from two different hitters in Game 3.

“They located down and away so well,” Cathedral coach Craig Beesley said. “We hit a lot of ground balls. They did a good job. You have to tip your hat to them. They were exceptional on the mound (Wednesday).”

Silliman’s Odom Stagg earned the win, allowing one earned run in Game 3 after pitching two innings of relief in Game 2.

In the end, the early damage was enough to put Cathedral away in five innings. LeJeune took a 1-0 pitch deep to left field in the bottom of the fifth inning to complete the route.

“Getting 10-ruled is never fun,” said catcher Zach Flattmann, who caught 13 innings Wednesday. “I’ve experienced it twice, just seeing another team dog pile isn’t fun.”

Right fielder Jardarius Anderson said he noticed a difference between the team’s intensity from Game 2 to Game 3.

“We had much better chemistry in (Game 2) than in (Game 3),” Anderson said. “They just had the bats (Wednesday).”

Andrew Beesley was 2-for-3 with two singles. White was 1-for-1 with a double and a walk.

Silliman 5, Cathedral 2 in 8 innings

Siebert launched a three-run homer to deep left for Silliman in the bottom of the eighth inning, and the Wildcats walked off to force a third game in the MAIS AAA championship series.

The homer came off Cathedral pitcher Gabe Smith, who had held the Wildcats scoreless since the third inning. Smith lasted 7.1 innings, allowing five earned runs on nine hits with three strikeouts.

The two early runs Smith allowed came on a balk in the first and a solo shot homer the bat of Zach Kelly in the third.

“I thought Gabe did a tremendous job and there was no way I was getting him out of there,” Craig said. “I was going to let him go as long as he could. For him to hold theme to two runs in seven innings — one was on a balk and one was on a pitch that might have stayed in at Chester Willis (Cathedral’s home park) — he did a great job on the mound.”

Cathedral was down 2-0 in the sixth inning when Brock Farmer grounded into a fielder’s choice that scored Andrew and Craig Bradley.

Silliman tossed out a pair of lefties. Starting pitcher Ryder Lockhart pitched six innings with three strikeouts and just three hits. Stagg pitch the final two innings in relief and stranded two runners on one hit.

“We weren’t disciplined at the plate,” Craig said. “I knew we would have trouble with the two left handers. We had trouble sitting back and hitting it the other way. We haven’t faced many left handers this year.”

Two players accounted for all of Cathedrals hits. Andrew was 2-4 with two doubles and a run scored. Jacob Jenkins was also 2-4.

“In every game, I look at ways we could have gotten more runs or not given up runs,” said Jenkins, who had six putouts in center field in Game 3. “It just fell that way (Wednesday).”