Lady Comets eye return to softball ‘mecca’

Published 12:07 am Saturday, April 25, 2015

LAPLACE — St. Charles Catholic coach Ty Monica said that while his Lady Comets team has talked openly about returning to Sulphur for the state softball tournament after a one-year absence, players have been careful to focus on the every day process and not just the end result.

The Comets looked like a team ready to head back to that tourney for the 10th time in the past 11 years, however, as Class 3A’s No. 2 seed easily dispatched visiting 31st seed West Feliciana (8-15), 16-1, in three innings by the 15-run rule in an opening round playoff game Tuesday.

St. Charles (24-6) will host No. 15 seed Caldwell Parish (16-7) at 2 p.m. today.

SCC set the tone by scoring seven first inning runs, highlighted in part by a two-run single by right fielder Sara Louque.

“We had a team text message (session) last night and we all know what our goal is,” Louque said. “We know what we need to do and how to get where we want to go.”

The Comets had a nine-year streak of reaching Sulphur — where the softball quarterfinal round and beyond is played — before falling at fourth-seeded Notre Dame by a run last year, 5-4, in the second round.

“We’ve been working extremely hard at practice because we know that’s what it takes,” Louque said.

“Our team is really like one big family.”

If so, Tuesday’s win was a true family affair for the Comets, who sent 13 batters to the plate in the first inning and saw the game’s first seven batters reach safely. Destiny Wesley, Morgan Nobile and Kaitlyn Lowry each drew walks before Caroline Julian singled home Wesley for the game’s first run. Paige Williams cleared the bases with a double, then Grace Mohon drew a walk and Louque singled home two runs to make it 6-0.

Lela Hill bunted Louque over, then Pylar Zeringue’s RBI single made it a 7-run inning.

Singles by West Feliciana’s Jordan Bringedahl and Kelsey Scales plated the Saints’ lone run in the second inning. The Comets fired back with seven runs in the second inning, the first on Williams’ score on a wild pitch and the next on a Hill RBI. Kaitlyn Boudreaux’s two-run single made it 11-1, Julian and Danielle Rankin each drove in the 12th and 13th runs of the day and the 14th scored on an error.

Kelsie Williams ended the game in the bottom of the third via her two-run double.

Jade Brady earned the win for St. Charles, going two innings and allowing one run on two hits and no walks. She struck out one. Ashley St. Martin pitched a clean third in relief.

Monica said it was “hard to tell” whether his team had snapped back into form after a week’s worth of rainouts — the Comets had last played on April 11 — but said he had a positive feeling about his team’s determination to make this a long postseason stay.

“I still see that look in their eye that says they’re hungry and ready to compete,” he said. “They’re not ready for this to end.”