Rams earn 1st district win
Published 11:45 pm Friday, March 28, 2014
By RYAN ARENA
LAPLACE — Coming off of a tough loss 3-1 to District 8-1A favorite St. John-Plaquemine, West St. John got its offense on track Tuesday in a 21-0 district victory at home over East Iberville.
The game ended after three innings because of the 15-run rule.
Five different Rams recorded two hits or more in the game, led by Austin Howard, Da’Jon Taylor and Anfernee Lumar, who each had three. Lumar had six RBIs, Howard collected five and Taylor added two for WSJ.
Lavonta Augusta and Keith Miller each earned two hits, Miller finishing with three RBIs and Augusta with one.
Lumar earned the win, earning a shutout on a day he allowed just three hits. He struck out six.
West St. John (4-6, 1-1) coach Greg Joseph said that the game was a nice confidence builder for an offense that’s struggled at times this season.
“We followed it up with a nice practice day at the plate,” said Joseph. “I thought we hit the ball well against St. John for the most part. If we can start stringing together some hits, I like our chances against anyone, especially if Austin’s on the mound.”
Howard struck out 13 batters against St. John last week and has continued to produce big as the Rams’ ace after a strong junior campaign.
“He’s a kid with a lot of God-given talent. Once in awhile, you come across a kid like that,” said Joseph. “Beyond that, he’s a competitor. Austin wants to win badly. That demeanor of his is something that’s tough to instill in a player. Whenever he’s on the mound, our guys know we’ve got every chance to win.”
Lumar, Rashaan Smith and Taylor join Howard in the rotation, and Joseph said he has full confidence in all of them to get the job done on a given day.
The St. John loss, Joseph said, was a tough one to swallow as he felt the Rams had their chances to come away with what could have been a key win in the 8-1A race.
But the game, he said, showed the Rams that they can compete with the district’s best.
“That’s the best team on paper. But when you go out and play hard and tough, like we did, you give yourself a chance to beat anyone. That was a game we should have won in my mind.”
West St. John will return to action Tuesday against White Castle and then Thursday against Ascension Christian. Both games will be at West St. John, slated to begin at 4 p.m. The White Castle game was originally slated to be played at White Castle, but the schools switched home and away dates.