Riverside’s season ends at thehands of Curtis in quarterfinals

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 12, 2010



HARAHAN — Riverside was determined to not let the top of John Curtis’ batting order end its season.

But while the top three Patriot batters collected only one RBI between them, the rest of the lineup provided the push Curtis needed to capture a 7-1 quarterfinal victory and advance to the Class 2A state baseball tournament in Shreveport.

“They swung the bats and we didn’t,” said Riverside coach Britt Waguespack. “They took advantage of their opportunities, and we just didn’t get what we needed today.”

Riverside finishes its season with a record of 14-19-1. They had defeated Curtis in their season district series, two games to one.

The Rebels took the early advantage in the third inning after Austin Vicknair singled on a shot to third base, and Bryant Tassin was hit by a pitch with one out. Chase Bazile doubled home the game’s first run, but Curtis starter Bryce Jenkins wriggled free of any further damage.

“When they make mistakes, we needed to do a better job of taking advantage,” said Waguespack. “That’s something we’ll need to improve upon to break through.”

The JCC (24-11) bats responded immediately in the inning’s bottom half. A leadoff walk to Gene Genevay and his steal of second base led to a Bryan Perry RBI single with one out. Brandon Bourgeois tripled to center field to bring him home, and with two outs Dylan Blandon collected an RBI triple of his own.

On both triples, the ball hung in the air and was caught by the wind, carrying over the heads of the Rebel outfielders.

“The last time we played, the wind was pushing in,” said Curtis coach Johnny Curtis. “We hit six balls to the fence and they caught them all. Today, it was just the opposite. Those balls carried.”

He said that the conditions highlighted what a strong performance Jenkins put forth as a starter.

“That team just came off of a five home runs game, with a lot of guys with multiple hits,” said Curtis. “Today, Bryce gave up nothing significant. He did a great job.”

In the fifth, Cardell Silas’ drilled a high shot to right that cleared for a two-run home run to make it 5-1.

JCC put the finishing touches on its scoring surge in the sixth, on a RBI double by Genevay and an RBI single by Perry.

The Rebels got two on in the seventh (on a walk to Vicknair and a single by Bazile), but that’s where it ended, as Jenkins closed things out.

“We knew what we had in the preseason, and we knew that this team had a chance to be playing among the top eight teams in 2A,” said Waguespack. “People counted us out all year long, but we stayed in it. I know I look for great things from this program in the future.”

The Rebels ended their season 10-4 in their last 14 games.