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Tigers, Wildcats represented on All-State squads

By RYAN ARENA
L’Observateur
LAPLACE – Four more local athletes were honored with the release of the Louisiana Sports Writers Association’s Class 5A All-State baseball and softball teams last week.
Hahnville’s Brooks Vial and Destrehan’s Kade Granier each earned spots on the 5A baseball squad, while on the softball side, Hahnville’s Lauren Simar and Lauren Beadle represent the Lady Tigers.
Vial led a strong Hahnville pitching rotation this season. The senior lefty finished with a 7-2 record and 1.12 ERA. He batted .327, providing plenty of value at the plate as well.
“Brooks was a leader on and off the field for our team,” said Hahnville coach David Baudry. “When he pitched, our team rallied behind him. And offensively, he came through with some really big, key hits.”
Baudry said that Vial’s deep repertoire of pitches set him apart.
“He can throw multiple pitches for strikes. His fastball, curveball, changeup and cut fastball,” said Baudry.  “When you can throw all of those pitches for strikes and do it consistently, that’s a recipe for success.”
Granier was also a strong two-way player for Destrehan. As the Wildcats’ cleanup hitter, he batted .411 with 42 RBIs and  1.018 OPS. The junior right-hander put together a 1.27 ERA and struck out 57 batters in 55.1 innings, finishing with a 6-2 record.
“He was very consistent at the plate,” said Destrehan coach Marty Luquet. “He gave us that power hitter, not so much in home runs, but he hit a lot of doubles. We hit .320 as a team, so that aspect of his game led to a lot of run production.”
Granier, who manned first base in his non-pitching starts, has drawn interest from schools like LSU and Alabama.
“He’s 6-foot-5 and has a big body that hasn’t matured yet,” said Luquet. “He’s going to add some miles per hour to that fastball when his body fills out. They’re excited about what he can progress into.”
Simar was one of the state’s premier sluggers in her junior campaign. The third baseman had an eye-popping .833 slugging percentage while batting .484 on the season with seven home runs, 39 RBIs and 37 runs scored.
“Her stats were incredible. Stats aren’t always the be all, end all, but she did some things that are almost unheard of,” said Hahnville coach Kenneth Vial. “She’s exactly what you want a high school athlete to be. Shows up every day, no complaining, just goes about her business and is driven to get better. She’s going to play at the college level and make somebody very happy.”
Beadle went 27-3 as Hahnville’s top pitcher, helping to lead the Tigers to the top seed in Class 5A and a trip to Sulphur for the state softball tournament. She finished with a 1.93 ERA and 173 strikeouts in 205 innings pitched.
“At the beginning of the year, I thought we’d be a good team. But I knew that her performance and consistency was going to make the biggest difference in how far we could go,” said Kenneth Vial. “She wasn’t a consistent player last summer, but she became one for us this year. She had a couple of rough spots early, but worked through them and grew up mentally.”