Published 12:04 am Saturday, June 4, 2016

LAPLACE — When the Louisiana High School Athletic Association reunited Riverside Academy and St. Charles Catholic in District 12-2A this season, local baseball fans rejoiced over the prospect of the two programs battling for superiority.

Those fans certainly got what they were hoping for. The Comets and the Rebels met four times this season, including once nearly 200 miles away in Sulphur as the two went head-to-head in the Class 2A semifinals.

SCC head coach Wayne Stein led the Comets to a share of the District 12-2A title and a runner-up finish in Class 2A.  (Lori Lyons/L’OBSERVATEUR)

SCC head coach Wayne Stein led the Comets to a share of the District 12-2A title and a runner-up finish in Class 2A. (Lori Lyons/L’OBSERVATEUR)

St. Charles won three of the four meetings, including that one. After splitting a pair of district games, they would share the district title three ways with Newman.

The Comets would finish their season 29-9 and as the Class 2A state runner-up, losing to St. Thomas Aquinas, 3-1. Riverside finished 23-11. Both can call 2016 a memorable season.

For leading the Comets to three victories over their rival and a sixth runner-up finish, St. Charles Catholic coach Wayne Stein is L’OBSERVATEUR’s Coach of the Year.

St. Charles placed a total of six players on the team, including senior pitcher Zach Roussel, catcher Brady Newman, infielders Justin Ory and Nick Scioneaux, outfielder Lloyd Nash and utility pitcher Brennan Gilberti.

Riverside’s senior pitcher Mason Vicknair is the Player of the Year. When the Rebels did beat the Comets on April 5 for the first time since 2008, it was Vicknair who led the charge. He pitched a complete game, allowing six hits, walking three and striking out 18 in a 7-6 victory. He finished the season 8-3 with an ERA of 1.34 and 84 strikeouts. He also hit .360 with five home runs, eight doubles, 27 RBIs and 38 runs scored.

Vicknair is joined on the team by fellow Rebels Jared Hymel, Connor Poche, Tyler Gauthier and Brandon Morris.

East St. John coach Jade Falgoust saw some improvement in his first season as coach, finishing 12-16. Three Wildcats made the team, including outfielder Justin Schnyder, pitcher I’Leke Brown and utility player C.J. Turner.

West St. John eighth grader Jalen Walker also made the team.

All-St. John Parish Baseball Team

P Zach Roussel, St. Charles, Sr.

The Comets’ top pitcher finished the season 9-3 with one save and a 2.91 ERA.  He struck out 46 batters and walked 13.

P Mason Vicknair, Riverside Academy, Sr.  

The ace of the Rebels’ staff finished 8-3, with a 1.34 earned run average in 74 innings pitched.  He gave up 43 hits, 14 earned runs and struck out 84. He also hit .360 with five home runs, eight doubles, five triples and 27 RBIs.

C Brady Newman, St. Charles Catholic, Sr.

He hit .375, with 32 RBIs.

IF Jared Hymel, Riverside Academy, So.

He hit .323 with 25 RBIs and 29 runs scored.

IF Justin Ory, St. Charles Catholic, Sr.

The future Delgado Dolphin had a .980 fielding percentage. He also hit .325 with 36 RBIs.

IF Connor Poche, Riverside, Jr.

He hit .304 with four doubles, two home runs and 16 RBIs.

IF Nick Scioneaux, St. Charles Catholic, Sr.

The Comets’ first baseman hit .300 with four doubles and 15 RBIs.

OF Tyler Gauthier, Riverside Academy, Sr.

The future Delgado Dolphin hit .362, with six doubles.

OF Lloyd Nash, St. Charles Catholic, So.

The speedy outfielder scored 45 of the Comets’ runs. He hit .350 with three triples, 13 RBIs and 38 stolen bases.

OF Justin Schnyder, East St. John, Jr.

The only Wildcat selected to the All-District 7-5A first team hit four doubles, five triples and drove in 20 runs. He struck out 44 batters pitching.

UT I’Leke Brown, East St. John, Sr.

A second team All-District selection as a pitcher, Brown had an ERA of 2.625 with 40 strikeouts.

UT Brennan Gilberti, St. Charles Catholic, Jr.

He was 9-3 with one save and finished with a 1.41 ERA and 43 strike outs.

UT Brandon Morris, Riverside Academy, Sr.

He hit .338 in 80 at-bats, finishing with 27 hits, six doubles, seven home runs and 26 RBIs.

UT C.J. Turner, East St. John, Jr.

A second team All-District selection, Turner had 16 RBIs.

UT Jalen Walker, West St. John, 8th

The Rams’ designated hitter played a little first base and a little outfield while hitting hit .300 with 22 RBIs.

Coach of the Year: Wayne Stein, St. Charles Catholic

Player of the Year: Mason Vicknair, Riverside Academy