Hawks roll past Creoles
Published 12:00 am Tuesday, July 29, 2008
By RYAN ARENA
There was plenty of thunder at East St. John on Sunday – both on the field and off.
The threat of rain on a very overcast afternoon threatened to postpone the River Parish Hawks’ Sugar Cane league semifinal against the Slidell Creoles. But outside of the occasional drizzle, the rain never came.
That gave the opportunity for the Hawks to display their ‘thunderous’ bats to match the sounds in the distance, outslugging the Creoles 15-9 to secure a berth in the league’s championship game.
“Our one, two, three, four and five guys really set the pace. They all hit it real well today,” said Hawks Coach Gary Anderson. “We had some good pitching and played some good defense, and it added up to a win.”
The Hawks (15-2), the league’s No. 2 seed, will travel to host Delise (MS), the no. 1 seed, this Sunday to crown a champion. The game will begin at 3 p.m.
A win in that game would net the Hawks their second league championship in three years, after winning it in 2006 and finishing second in 2007.
The game was not as close as the score indicated. The Hawks were up 15-3 entering the ninth inning, where the Creoles scored six runs before finally bowing out.
The Hawks led 2-0 in the first inning when Damon Ursin singled home two runs to extend the lead to 4-0. RBI singles by Brandon Mason and Rondon Anderson, along with a sacrifice fly RBI by Todd Brown helped extend the lead to 8-0 in the second inning.
With the Hawks leading 9-0, Slidell made a push to climb back in it. A walk and single to lead off the inning preceded a three-run home run by the Creoles’ Anthony Gio that made it 9-3. But after allowing a double, Hawks pitcher Ronald August retired the next three batters to end the threat. August wouldn’t allow another run in his five innings of work.
From there, the Hawks cruised. August scored on a wild pitch in the fifth to make it 10-3. Mason singled to score a run, then Anderson’s two run single made it 13-3.
The Hawks added two in the eighth to round out their scoring.
Now, the Hawks turn their attention to Delise. The teams locked up late in the regular season in another offensive battle – Delise won 15-12.
Anderson has reason to believe the script could be flipped this time, though.
“We’re pitching better now than we were. Our defense has tightened up,” he said. “We’re ready.”