Seniors reflect on final season

Published 12:24 am Thursday, May 19, 2016

CLINTON, La. — The Cathedral High School senior class made up all but two spots in the Green Wave lineup.

The players were a part of three state championship appearances, including one state title in 2015, a current 28-game home winning streak that spans back to their sophomore season, and countless innings logged on the diamond.

“I’m reflecting on the years I played with these guys,” said senior Sam Parker, who will continue playing baseball at East Central Community College next season. “The relationships you develop in baseball you keep for a lifetime. Losing state is one thing, but you lose the team. The relationship is still there, but I will never step on the field with these guys again. That’s the saddest thing of all of this.”

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In his final game, Reed White took the mound in a five-run game and threw 3.1 innings of relief. He also hit a double in the fourth inning.

“I wanted to dig deep and leave it all on the field,” White said. “I didn’t want to regret anything … I played my heart out.”

On his final day in a Cathedral uniform, Jacob Jenkins lined two singles in Game 2 and made a number of plays in center field, including a catch-and-throw double play at the plate in Game 3.

Jenkins said that while some players can still look fondly on bright futures in baseball, Wednesday night’s game was the end for many.

“It’s not searching for a meaning, it’s looking forward to what’s ahead,” Jenkins said. “We have three kids, and they’re crying right now, but they still have baseball ahead. Half of us don’t have more baseball to play. It’s about looking forward to the future and seeing what it holds.”

As for his play in center, Jenkins chalked it up to years of roaming the outfield that made the play routine.

“It’s just a catch-and-throw, nothing special,” he said.

Cathedral’s only two starting underclassmen are juniors Craig Bradley and Zach Flattmann.

Flattman was caught up with a rough night at the plate Wednesday, and said looking forward he hopes his team can square up pitches better than it did in the final two games of the year. To his departing teammates, who he has been with since he was a youngster, the catcher said he wishes them all the best.

“Good luck and make wise choices,” Flattmann said. “Remember this, because you’ll never get this again.”

Coach Craig Beesley will shift his focus to the young corp of his group. Beesley’s son Andrew is a member of the class of 2016 and will continue his playing career at Southwest Mississippi Community College. Beesley said Cathedral finished 49-9 over the past two seasons.

“I’m going to put a lot on these young guys,” Beesley said. “Hopefully we can keep the success going.”