Bears and Lady Cardinals Undefeated in District Baseball and Softball
Last updated 3/29/2022 at 1:05pm
The only undefeated baseball team in District 22-4A after two weeks of action is Little Cypress-Mauriceville. The Bears defeated the Vidor Pirates 4-1 on Friday in the only game they played last week.
The victory made LCM 3-0 in district play. The Bears led Orangefield with a 3-1 record by half a game in the standings. Bridge City and Silsbee were both 2-1 one game behind the Bears going into the games played Tuesday, March 29.
Dean Reynolds contributed to the Bears' win in the beginning and at the close of the contest. Reynolds was hit by a pitch to open the second inning which sparked a three-run rally. Little Cypress-Mauriceville did not hit a ball out of the infield in the inning and benefitted from three Vidor errors.
Gage Griffith and Parker Seago both had runs batted in the second with ground balls. The fourth run for the Bears came in the sixth thanks to a walk by Griffith, a single by Seago, and a wild pitch.
Starting Bear pitcher Reid Peco competed well and yielded only a first inning run to Vidor while striking out eight Pirates before his pitch count caused LCM Coach Hunter Hagler to relieve him with one out in the bottom of the sixth. Reynolds played the role of closer retiring five of the six batters he faced to secure the win for Peco.
Coach Hagler shared his thoughts about the Bears being in first place. "I don't think we're going to think about that too much. I think we're just going to stick to the plan, play each day, pitch to pitch, play each game, game to game. We're really not worried about anything like the standings looking into the future, we're just playing day to day," Hagler confided.
Little Cypress-Mauriceville played second place Orangefield at Don Gibbens Field on Tuesday of this week. The Bears play the two third place teams in the coming week at Silsbee on Friday, April 1, and at Bridge City on Tuesday, April 5.
The Orangefield Bobcats battled the Lumberton Raiders for five innings before breaking away for an important 6-1 win on Wednesday. The game had been postponed one day because of heavy rains on Tuesday, March 22.
Orangefield and Lumberton were tied in the standings before the game at 1-1 and on the scoreboard 1-1 after five innings. The Bobcats scored first when Jason Bodin reached on a two-base error and scored on a squeeze bunt by Brennon Lecoq in the second inning. The Raiders tied the score in the fourth on Gavin Harmse's two-out double the first hit off Bobcat starter Trent Eaves to drive in Kaden Copes who had reached on an error.
Having struck out his first two trips to the plate against Raider pitcher Copes, Kameryn Henderson made amends hammering a homerun to start the top of the sixth inning for the Bobcats. Tyler Shearin then walked, stole second base, and went to third on an errant throw. He scored on a sacrifice fly by Kyle Michael to put Orangefield up by two runs.
Kolbie Sowell made it a three-run margin, 4-1, socking a homerun as the last batter Copes faced. Copes had a no-hitter going until the homer by Henderson to begin the big inning.
With two outs in the seventh Henderson got another rally started with a walk. Shearin followed with an infield single before a walk by Michael loaded the bases with Bobcats. Sowell doubled to right field scoring Henderson and Shearin for insurance runs.
Eaves for Orangefield had matched Copes pitching the first five innings allowing just one unearned run. Eaves surrendered only the double to Harmse, but walked six while striking out nine.
A high pitch count caused Orangefield Coach Tim Erickson to relieve Eaves with Jason Bodin to start the sixth inning. Bodin earned a save striking out six Raiders over the last two innings and allowing the only two Lumberton base runners to reach on an error and a walk. Eaves got the win.
The Bobcats won their third straight district game defeating West Orange Stark 10-0 in five innings two days later on Friday. Orangefield's Coop Longron shutout the Mustangs with ten strikeouts until Kolbie Sowell relieved him with the bases loaded and struck out the Mustangs' Tyrone Wilson to end the top of the fifth inning.
Orangefield opened the scoring in the first inning when Kyle Michael drove in a run with a double. The Bobcats tallied four runs in the fourth inning on a triple by Jason Bodin and another double by Michael to take a nine-run lead. Macoy Marze closed the game out in the bottom of the fifth with his second hit of the game to bring home Caleb Fregia with the tenth Bobcat run.
It was tough week for the Mustangs who are still looking for their first win of the season. Vidor beat West Orange-Stark 19-0 on Tuesday before the loss to Orangefield on Friday.
A single by Carlos Calana in the second inning against Orangefield was a positive for West Orange Stark, one of three hits for the Mustangs in the game. Grayson Gregory took the loss for West Orange Stark. Gregory went four innings allowing nine runs on eight hits and striking out one.
The Bridge City Cardinals won an exciting extra inning game on March 22, over the Silsbee Tigers. Heavy rains earlier in the day caused postponement of many local games, but the conditions at Chuck Young Field in Bridge City were good and the game was played with no noticeable slipping.
The pitching matchup was a good one with Ethan Oceguera throwing for the Cardinals against the Tigers' ace Logan Simmons. Oceguera went the first six innings striking out 11 Tigers and giving up three runs only two of which were earned.
Silsbee scored its unearned run in the third inning when Oceguera attempted to pickoff a Tiger runner at third base, but threw wildly allowing the runner to come home with the first run of the game. The Cardinals would answer in the bottom half of that inning.
JS Bearden led off with a walk for Bridge City. Chasse Goodwin laid down a perfect bunt which he beat out for a single. Simmons retired the next two Cardinal batters and appeared ready to wriggle out of the jam until a Tiger error on a grounder hit by JT Fielder allowed two runners to score giving Bridge City a 2-1 lead.
Oceguera followed with a base hit to left field to keep the inning going. John Van Huis hit a ground ball to second base that was bobbled for an error on which courtesy runner Trey Lovelace also scored.
A two-out two-run single in the sixth by Silsbee tied the game. The bottom of the eighth inning started with Bridge City's Deegan King dodging a bullet when his foul popup was missed by the Tigers' catcher, and King eventually gained a base on balls.
Aidyn Mulhollan bunted King to second. Landon Reeves who relieved Oceguera in the seventh also drew a walk. Van Huis was hit by a pitch for the second time in the game to load the bases. Brice Swanton hit a chopper down the third base line that brought King home with the winning run in the 4-3 Bridge City victory.
Cardinal Coach Chad Landry was nervous and happy with another one-run win. "It was a really good ball game. It would be fun to sit in the bleachers and watch that one, but sitting in the dugout it's not too much fun. Ethan did a great job on the mound for us. We finally got some runners on and scored on infield errors and by putting some pressure on them. Proud of the way we fought," Landry answered.
In softball Bridge City remained undefeated in district and in first place. The Lady Cardinals won their only game of the week decisively 14-0 over the Silsbee Lady Tigers on Wednesday, March 23. The game was in Silsbee and played a day later because of the inclement weather that passed through the area the day before.
Pitcher Carson Fall was nearly as perfect as she could be for the game's five innings. Fall allowed just one hit and struck out the other fifteen batters she faced.
The Lady Tigers kept the game close for three innings only trailing the Lady Cardinals by two runs. Bridge City blew the game open scoring eight runs in the fourth and adding four more in the fifth to seal the 10-run rule.
Marlie Strong had a great day at the plate going three for three and added a walk. She scored two runs and drove in three more. Fall showed she can hit as well as pitch socking a homerun.
Nicole Sasser continued her hot streak with the bat knocking two hits and scoring two runs. In her last three games Sasser has seven hits and scored five runs for the Lady Cardinals.
Bridge City Coach Raven Harris is very thankful to have Nicole playing like she is. "She's fast, she's really probably the only speed I've got on this team. If she can hit the ball she's going to run those bases," Harris exclaimed.
A Lady Cardinal who has missed the entire district so far is Amaris Larkin with an ankle fracture. Larkin had been the prospective leadoff batter for Bridge City, but is not expected to recover from her injury until the last week of the district schedule or the beginning of the post season in late April.
Friday, March 25, was the Lady Cardinals' bye date for the first half of the district. Bridge City went to it sitting in first place with a 5-0 record.
A big game for Bridge City was played Tuesday, March 29, at Lumberton against the second place Lady Raiders which concluded the first half of district play. Harris admitted, "That's where my nerves are, we're not looking past anybody but I keep thinking if we can just get through this next week. It's competitive everywhere you go."
Another game that was postponed a day was the contest between the Orangefield Lady Bobcats and the Lumberton Lady Raiders. The two teams had identical 2-1 records going in, but the Lady Raiders emerged with the 8-1 victory on their home field.
The Lady Raider offense was very balanced throughout their lineup and used a good mix of power and speed to score their eight runs. Lady Bobcat pitcher Abigail Curphey did not have her best stuff. Orangefield Coach Rebekah Ragsdale commented, "Curphey competed well, and it was definitely a learning experience for our young ace who has pitched exceptionally well for us thus far."
The Lady Bobcats are very young, and Ragsdale is hoping they can build to get better from this loss. "Our young group has to learn how to compete even on days when we aren't feeling our best. Each time out, we learn something new and are gaining valuable experience that is going to help us in both the next round of district, and future seasons," Ragsdale expressed.
Orangefield rebounded at its home field on Friday. The Lady Bobcats defeated the West Orange-Stark Lady Mustangs 12-2 in a six inning 10-run rule win.
Curphey went the distance in the circle giving up four hits and two runs with six strikeouts for the win. The win made the Lady Bobcats 3-2 in district play.
Rylee Dougay and Greenlea Oldham led the offense with three hits apiece. Dougay had two runs batted in with a run scored, and Oldham had a double and three runs batted in while scoring a run.
Joli Ponfick had two doubles, two walks, and scored three runs. Harleigh Rawls had a double and accounted for five Lady Bobcat runs.
The Lady Bobcats played their next game against Little Cypress-Mauriceville on Tuesday which closed out their first half of the district schedule. Orangefield plays again on Friday, April 1, at home against the Vidor Lady Pirates who the Lady Bobcats beat 10-5 in their first district meeting.
Little Cypress-Mauriceville sat in second place of the district standings at 4-1 after the Lady Bears defeated the Lady Pirates 10-0 in five innings at Vidor on Friday, March 25. Cami Shugart was strong in the circle pitching the shutout, giving up just two hits, and striking out five Lady Pirates.
The hitting accolades were shared by several Lady Bears. Rhylan Wilson went two for two with four runs batted in. Ava Wright and Keylie Washburn both collected three hits in the game.
Coach Dena Adkins was proud of her Lady Bears. "We had a good game tonight. I'm very happy with all the girls and their performance. Cami was lights out tonight and our offense was on fire," Adkins praised.
The Lady Bears start the second half of district on Friday at Silsbee. LCM beat the Lady Tigers 8-6 in the district opener back on March 8.
The West Orange-Stark Lady Mustangs found their bats last week. After scoring just one run on a homer by T'Era Garrett in their first three district games the Lady Mustangs scored eleven runs combined in their two most recent performances against Vidor and Orangefield.
Nine runs were put on the board as West Orange-Stark came up short 20-9 against Lady Pirates in the first game of the last week. Garrett had a monster game going two for three with a double, a grand slam for her third homerun of the season, and six runs batted in.
Katie Hogg had a big game going two for four with a double, a run driven in and two runs scored. Ariel Farris, Paris Overstreet, and Nataleigh Sims all contributed to the nine runs for the Lady Mustangs.
Sims was also much in the circle than the score indicated. Nataleigh only gave up four earned runs.
Coach Matt Robertson and Lady Mustangs were seeking their first win in district against the Silsbee Lady Tigers on Tuesday, March 29. West Orange-Stark begins the second half of district at Bridge City on Friday.