Livadais’ home run pushs Cards past Rebels

Published 12:00 am Saturday, April 17, 2010



BELLE CHASSE – Riverside coach Kristy Hebert understood her players’ dejection following their 4-2 loss to host Belle Chasse in Wednesday’s regular season finale, one that came on a walk-off home run.

She also had a message for them.

“I just told them, ‘The way you feel right now, if you don’t want to feel like that when it counts then get ready to practice tomorrow,’” said Hebert.

The Rebels had chances to win, but an uncharacteristic slew of errors allowed the Cardinals’ Amanda Livaudais to step to the plate with a chance to win the game in the bottom of the seventh inning. She sent a towering shot to dead center, clearing the wall for a two-run home run.

“I was ready for that one. I’d been waiting all game for it,” said Livaudais. “We’ve been in a slump, but I feel like this proves that we can be better than that.”

Belle Chasse, the defending 4A state champion, had lost three district games by a single run to go with some very close non-district losses.

“Some of those losses were our fault, and really in some we just had some tough luck,” said Belle Chasse Tony LaBella. “When you keep working at something and don’t see the results, it can be very frustrating. So it’s nice to win one like this.”

Both Riverside’s Destin Vicknair and Belle Chasse’s Rachel Hinson were tough all day on the mound, placing a premium on runs scored.

The Rebels struck first in the top of the first inning when Shea LaFountain scored from third on a double steal — courtesy runner Kaci Simon got caught in an intentional rundown, allowing Shea LaFountain to score from third to make it 1-0.

Belle Chasse answered in the third. Ashlyn Buras singled on a ball that fell between Riverside defenders in the infield, and Markeia Duncan followed with another single. The Cardinals loaded the bases on a dropped fly ball in the outfield.

“We committed seven errors today, uncharacteristically,” said Hebert. “If we take care of business in the field, then that home run ties the game at two, if anything.”

Vicknair induced a pop up for the second out, but Belle Chasse tied the game on a passed ball. Vicknair stuck out Caitlyn Ciaccio to end the threat, and she struck out three more in the fourth to stifle any damage that two Rebel errors in that inning would do.

Riverside took the lead back in the fifth after Taylor Terrio reached on an infield hit with two outs. LaFountain walked and Katie Bailey singled Terrio home from second to make it 2-1.

Belle Chasse responded on Beth Dingler’s RBI single that followed a leadoff walk of Jordan Nielsen.

The Cardinals survived the top of the seventh when, with two on, centerfielder Livaudais made a diving catch on a LaFountain hit with two on and one out, stopping a go-ahead run from crossing.

Then in the bottom of the inning, Duncan reached on an error, and Livaudais followed with her blast.

“You make those mistakes and give them the momentum, and that’s what follows,” said Hebert.

Riverside’s ticket is punched for the playoffs and was to learn its first round matchup on Friday after the coaches’ vote on seeding. The Rebels finished eighth in Class 2A in terms of power rating.

Belle Chasse finished 13th in Class 4A, and hoped that would be enough to earn a wildcard.

“We aren’t 100 percent in. But we feel like if we get in, we’ll be a real tough out for somebody,” said LaBella.