The Green Wave dropped its second game of the week, this time a road loss to the Rummel Raiders at Kirsh Rooney Stadium in New Orleans. Rummel got out to an early lead when they scored 2 runs in the bottom of the first. Ponchatoula responded with 2 runs in the top of the second when Caleb Flanagan drew a lead off walk and Brent Stromeyer reached on an error both runners advanced on a sacrifice bunt by Russel Rock. Flanagan scored on a ground out to 2nd by Ben Johnson and courtesy runner Gabe Peavey scored to tie it at 2-2 on a single by Jalen Pines. Rummel answered in the top of the 3rd in a big way when they plates 6 runs in the inning which proved to be all they would need to hold on for the win. Ponchatoula got back into it in the 5th when they added 3 runs to close the gap to 8-5. Cameron Stewart lead off with a single then Bock Daniels doubled down the left field line, Freshman John Gardner pinch hitting got an RBI single up the middle and Brady Perise scored pinch runner Johnathan Boudreaux with a single to right field. The Green Wave added another run when Gardner crossed on an error by the Raiders but Ponchatoula could not overcome the 6 runs they gave up in the 3rd as the Raiders shut the door in the final 2 innings to hold on for the 8-5 victory.
Slidell Tiger Pitcher Ethan Gillespie stymied the Ponchatoula offense with a no hit shutout performance Thursday night at Athletic Park. Gillespie did walk 5 batters on the night including 3 in a row in the bottom of the 3rd but after Kole Sonnier and Brady Perise drew back to back walks Ponchatoula executed the double steal and the Tiger’s catcher threw the ball into center field but when Sonnier tried to score he was thrown out at home by the Tiger center fielder. After that Gillespie struck out the next 2 batters to end the threat. Chad Mull went 6 innings for Ponchatoula giving up 5 runs on 6 hits while striking out 5 and walking 2 Tiger’s however only 1 run was earned as the Green Wave Defense committed 8 errors on the night. The tough home district loss puts the Green Wave season record at 11-8 and puts them at 1-2 in district 6-5A play.
In a typical tooth and nail District 6-5A battle Ponchatoula, fueled by a 6th inning rally came away with a 8-6 win in their District home opener over the Mandeville Skippers at Athletic Park Tuesday night. The Skippers got out to an early lead when they posted 2 runs in the top of the 1st but Ponchatoula erased that when they came back with 3 runs of their own in the bottom of the inning. Mandeville added 2 runs in the 2nd with the aid of some defensive miscues by Ponchatoula and another in the 3rd to take a 5-3 lead. Ponchy scratched across a run in the bottom of the 3rd when Logan Lacriox singled to right and advanced on the bases and eventually scored on past balls. The Skippers added another run in the top of the 5th but the Green Wave again stayed within striking distance with a run of its own in the bottom half of the inning when Basil Williams led off the inning with a triple then stole home on a force baulk play to put the score at 6-5. Brock Daniels who went the distance for Ponchy got 2 consecutive fly balls and a strike out to put Mandeville down in the 6th. and the Green Wave offense did what it needed to do to pull ahead in the bottom of the 6th when Jalen Pines drew a 1 out walk then advanced to 2nd when Russel Rock also got a base on balls. Pines stole 3rd and scored on a past ball. After Cameron Stewart drew a 2 out walk Caleb Flanagan and Logan Lacriox came up with back to back RBI single’s to score Rock and Stewart to put Ponchatoula up 8-6. Daniels closed the door on the Skippies and got the win with 2 strike outs and a ground out sandwiched between a double in the 7th. Ponchatoula pushes it record to 11-7 (1-1 District) on the season. The Green Wave stay at home with a match-up with the Slidell Tigers this coming Thursday. JV scheduled for 4 – Varsity at 6:30
The final game of Ponchatoula’s 3 game schedule in this weekend’s Toot Gainer Tournament was exciting to say the least however the Green Wave saw victory slip from their grasp as the Lutcher Bulldogs put a pair of Rally’s together in both the 5th and 6th innings. Early on things looked very good for the Green Wave and the possibility of going 3-0 on the weekend looked good as Ponchatoula took a 5-1 lead going into the bottom of the 5th inning. With only 9 outs remaining Freshman Right hander Collin Babin was going strong having only given up 1 run on 2 hits through 4 innings. Ponchatoula was also playing good defense through the first 4 innings having committed only 1 error when in the bottom of the 4th an errant throw from 3rd to 1st allowed a bulldog runner to advance to 2nd base. And after Babin surrendered his second hit to that point with 2 runners on and only 1 out Babin stiffened and induced 2 consecutive ground ball outs to get out of the inning unscathed. Lutcher’s half of the 5th inning was not a good one for the Green Wave, the Bulldog’s got a single to right field to start the inning off then on what could have been a potential double play grounder to short Ponchatoula committed the first of 2 costly errors in the inning. Lutcher plated 2 runs on back to back hits then with bases loaded and only 1 out the dogs hit a chopper back to the mound, an attempt to turn a double play resulted in an overthrow to 2nd base allowing 2 more Lutcher runs to score. With 2 runners still on and only 1 out Babin again induced 2 consecutive ground ball outs to end the inning tied at 5 runs a piece. The Ponchatoula offense was not about to give up as Jalen Pines was hit by a pitch to start off the inning. Pines took 2nd on a past ball and Russell Rock singled to left field. Pines scored on a sacrifice fly by Basil Williams. Cameron Stewart drew a walk then stole 2nd. With 2 runners in scoring position Rock came in from 3rd on a ground ball to 1st by Caleb Flanagan and Stewart scored on a throwing error on the play to put the Wave up 8-5. The Bulldogs however would not quit, With Babin still on the mound he got the 1st Bulldog batter to fly out to center but then after surrendering a walk followed by a bunt single Ponchatoula brought in Brock Daniels in relief. Just coming off of a Tuesday outing Daniels did not have his best stuff and after giving up 3 singles with 1 strike out the game was again tied. Ponchatoula brought in Freshman Ben Johnston in relief and after a misplayed ball in right field compounded by an error on the throw in to 2nd two more runs scored runs scored putting Lutcher up 10-8. After Lutcher added another run on a past ball The Wave brought in Grant Amerson who got the bulldog batter to fly out to short on the first pitch. Ponchatoula could not mount a comeback in the top of the 7th and fell by a final of 11-8.
Caleb Flanagan led the Wave on offense with 2 RBI’s on 2 hits, Brady Perise also had an RBI on 2 hits and Cameron Stewart added another 2 hits. Collin Babin got the start for Ponchatoula going 5 1/3 innings allowing 7 (4 earned) runs on 6 hits with 2 strike outs, Brock Daniels took the loss allowing 4 runs on 4 hits and 1 K. This Weekend marked the end of Tournament Play with the District schedule to start in earnest next week, Ponchatoula is scheduled to take on Mandeville at Athletic Park Tuesday at 6:30 (JV at 4)