Wildcats best Rams behind Eugene, move to 5-4

Published 11:45 pm Tuesday, March 18, 2014


LAPLACE – East St. John moved its record to 5-4 after winning a pair of offensive slugfests over the weekend, besting Bonnabel 16-15 on Friday and then local rival West St. John 29-20 Saturday.

Ciera Eugene led the charge in the win over WSJ, going 5 for 6 at the plate, including a home run.

East St. John trailed 18-8 before rallying to win.

“We’re really young, but we fight,” said East St. John coach Stasha Thomas, now in her second season with the Ladycats. “They come out to compete and even when a mistake is made, nobody dwells on it.’

“Even when we fell behind, the girls were telling me in the dugout, ‘Coach, we’re gonna win this one. We’re coming back. And they believed it. They turn negatives into positives.”

Thomas said before the season that she felt like this team would take a step forward, and offensively that’s held true. 

Eugene has moved from the three hole to cleanup, Thomas said, due to her hot start to the season.

“She’s hit some deep balls this year that’s brought us back in games,” said Thomas. “Ciera’s a girl who’s willing to do what it takes on and off the field. She’s a hard-worker.”

The win over Bonnabel (0-7) on Friday also saw ESJ rally. The Wildcats trailed 15-11 headed into the bottom of the seventh inning before scoring five runs to earn a walk-off victory. 

The Wildcats are in the midst of a busy week. A district matchup with a powerful Hahnville team was set for Tuesday. Today, ESJ will travel to St. James and on Thursday, Thibodaux will visit ESJ. 

On Saturday, the Wildcats will be in Edgard for the West St. John softball tournament, where ESJ will face McDonogh No. 35 and Karr.

The Rams’ softball tourney will feature eight teams, with games being played on two fields at 10 a.m., 12 p.m., 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. 

West St. John fell to 0-3 with the loss on Saturday, the Rams in the process of rebuilding this season and gaining experience for a young group. WSJ fell 20-5 to White Castle and 17-0 to Ascension Catholic in District 8-1A games last week.

“We’re still going through some rough parts,” said West St. John coach Brandon Dumas. 

“We’re moving some players around. We just moved two of our best outfielders into the infield … The more time the girls get in their new positions, the more confident they’ll become.”

Dumas said that senior Treshaun Trench has lived up to expectations early on, while 8th grader Alaney Favorite has been a pleasant surprise at second base. And catcher Jaylan Pierce went 2 for 3 with three steals Saturday against East St. John; the sophomore has done a solid job at catcher after moving to that position this season, Dumas said. 

“We’re building our foundation,” Dumas said. “Our girls are still pushing, fighting and playing hard. Nobody’s giving up, that’s for sure.”