Prep Baseball Report

Opening Day Action

PBR Louisiana Staff
PBR Louisiana

Opening day of the 2020 LHSAA baseball season got off to a nice start with some quality matchups to get the season underway. The PBR Louisiana staff hit the road Monday and was on hand for three games, starting with St. Thomas Aquinas playing host to Riverside Academy.

The Falcons have several high-level prospects including Casey Artigues, a Southern Mississippi recruit who is currently ranked No. 17 in Louisiana’s 2021 class and Ethan Alston, a Tulane recruit who is currently ranked No. 32 in the 2021 class. Alston and Artigues were held in check for the most part, but were able to still find their way on base via free passes before swiping 3 bags between the two of them and accounting for a pair of runs. The opening day leader was Layton Pittman who set the tone for St. Thomas Aquinas, pacing the Falcons to a 9-2 victory to get their 2020 campaign off to a fast start.

Next up we headed over to Covington, LA, where two division 1 powerhouses matched up on opening day, as Catholic HS (BR) traveled to the defending State Champions St. Pauls Wolves home park to kick off the 2020 season.

St. Paul’s took the opening day victory, defeating Catholic(BR) 5-1, as the Wolves got outstanding pitching performances from 2020 RHP Nick Wright and Louisiana State recruit, 2021 RHP/SS Conner Simon. Offensively, the Wolves were led by Sam Heap, who finished the day 3-for-3 with two RBI.

An Alabama-Birmingham recruit, RHP Nick Wright gave the Wolves a quality start, going four innings allowing one run on three hits. He showed a quality three pitch mix, pitching 85-87 mph with his fastball, and showed a sharp slider with tight spin and depth at 76-78 mph.

Louisiana’s No. 1 ranked player in the 2021 class, Connor Simon, came in at the game’s most critical juncture and delivered. He relieved Wright in the 5th inning, entering with bases loaded, no outs, and the heart of the Bears’ lineup due up. He proceeded to strike out three in a row, ending the Bears’ offensive threat. He finished his outing with eight strikeouts in three innings of work, allowing only one hit.

The Bears got off to a fast start on Monday, as Louisiana-Lafayette recruit, 2021 1B Mason Zambo sent a 2-1 changeup over the right field wall in the top of the 1st inning, showing why he is one of the top hitters in the state of Louisiana. Zambo finished the day 2-for-4, as he added a hard hit single to the backside in his second at-bat of the day.

LSU-Eunice recruit, 2020 RHP Luke McGibboney got the start for Catholic(BR) on the mound, and showed electric stuff at times in his three innings of work. Pitching 86-89 mph with his fastball, he collected five strike outs, while only walking one, as he pitched up the strike zone with his fastball effectively, consistently beating bats.

To finish off our opening day coverage, we were on hand for a 5A showdown, as the Live Oak Eagles hosted the Barbe Buccaneers. This matchup opened up Live Oak’s recently constructed all turf ballpark which immediately showed its value on the rain soaked night.

The Buccaneers took the victory behind outstanding performances by several players including Louisiana-Lafayette recruit Kyle Debarge, Louisiana State recruit Brody Drost, Mississippi State recruit Davis Meche, and McNeese State recruit Ben David.

Debarge was 2-for-4 with a 2-run home run and reached on a HBP, while Drost reached base four times on walks, while Meche drove in a pair of runs including a first inning RBI triple that scored Drost. David finished the day 1-for-3 with an RBI and a walk, while flashing solid catch and throw tools behind the dish.

On the mound, Barbe was lead by LHP Brody Drost who was electric for two innings before running into trouble in the 3rd, where Live Oak took advantage walks and a pair of errors to push across three runs in the bottom of the 3rd.

Drost was relived by Louisiana Lafayette recruit, Adam Guth who worked a pair of scoreless innings before giving way to Gavin Guidry who finished the game for the Bucs.

Although they didn’t come away with the victory, the Eagles showed they will be a force in class 5A this year. Live Oak was led at the plate by Louisiana State recruit Brant Smith who reached base twice including a rocket single. While Southeastern Louisiana recruit Rhett Rosevear had a slow night at the plate but still managed to reach base once while erasing multiple runs defensively as he made two diving web gems at shortstop.

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