Pelicans take down Wildcats in CENLA sweep
PINEVILLE – Noah Detillier and Collin Zeringue banged out 3 hits apiece in the opener, and three Pelican pitchers combined on a 2-hitter in Game 2, as Nunez Community College swept a twin-bill from the Louisiana Christian University Junior Varsity on a pleasant Thursday afternoon/evening at Billy Allgood Field.
GAME 1 – NUNEZ 9, LOUISIANA CHRISTIAN JV 3
The Pelicans plated two in the top of the first as Detillier opened with a hard-ground infield single to short and Alex Crews drew a base-on-balls, with both then moving up on a wild pitch. Zeringue then scored Detillier with an RBI-groundout to short, and then after 2 more walks loaded the bases, Crews raced home on a passed ball.
After the Wildcats tied it on Chris Kelley’s line shot solo homer in the bottom of the first and three straight singles in the second, Nunez starter Colby Smith shut off the rally with a strikeout and ground-out, leaving the game the next inning with a 2-run lead.
The Pelicans then came right back with 3 more in the top of the third as Crews led off with a line single to left and Zeringue followed with an infield single to short. Landon Manson next scored Crews with a line-drive single, with he and Zeringue then circling the bases as the ball was muffed in left field and rolled all the way to the wall.
After Cats got one back in the bottom half on a hit-by-pitch, single, passed ball, and ground-out to make the score 5-3, reliever Ira Austin ended the inning with a fly-out, and then proceeded to shut off the LCU offense through the bottom of the fifth, before handing it off to freshman Landon Cortez for the final 2 innings.
The Pelicans then stretched out the lead to 9-3 in the top of the sixth as Detillier stayed hot at the plate by grounding a 1-out single to center and Crews drew another walk, reaching base for the fourth time in 5 plate appearances. Zeringue then smoked a hard-grounder past short that rolled into the left-center gap for a double, with Detillier scoring and Crews reaching third. Then, after Manson beat out a dribbler in front of the plate with the runners holding, pinch-hitter Reggie Bergeron launched a towering sacrifice fly to right to plate Crews and advance the runners to 2nd and 3rd, after which Payton Cooper drove a line-shot double over the centerfielder’s head to score both Zeringue and courtesy-runner Davison Stokes.
Austin cruised those 3 middle innings, giving up no runs or hits, while striking out 4 and walking none to get credit for the win. Cortez, in need of some bullpen innings in advance of next week’s start, then closed out the game on the mound, yielding no runs and just one hit and one walk while striking out 2.
Nunez – 203 004 0 – 9 15 0
La Christian – 111 000 0 – 3 7 3
W – Austin L – Champlain.
Smith, Austin (3), Cortez (6) and Manson.
Whitney, Champlain (2), Pope (4),
Darrah (6), Drake (7) and Kelley.
2B – Cooper, Zeringue.
HR – Kelley. SF – Bergeron
GAME 2 – NUNEZ 7, LOUISIANA CHRISTIAN JV 2
The Pelicans scored their first 6 runs of the game with timely 2-out hitting, starting in the top of the third as Ashtyn Ellis grounded a hard single into centerfield and Detillier followed with a hard smash of the 3rd-sacker’s glove for another single. Crews then sacrificed the runners into scoring position, and after a strikeout, Manson plated both runners with a line single to left to put the Pels up 2-0.
Nunez added 4 more the next inning as Caleb Duhon (2-for-4, RBI) reached on a fielder’s choice and James Bendeck grounded a hard-single through the 43 hole into right. After the runners moved up on a wild pitch and Ellis walked to load the bases, Detillier scored the first 2 runners with a clutch line single to left to make it 4-0. After another Crews freebie reloaded the sacks, Zeringue scored both Ellis and Detillier with another sharp grounder into centerfield.
Winning-pitcher Cooper got the start for the Pels, going 4 innings, striking out 5, and giving up the only 2 Wildcat hits of the game, both doubles in the fourth inning as the home team scored their first run. LCU got their second run the next inning on a walk, stolen base, throwing error, and groundout to cut it to 6-2.
The Pelicans scored their final run in the top of the seventh as Manson drew a 1-out walk and moved to third on a fielder’s choice and another walk, next scoring on Duhon’s hard-ground single into left field.
Right-handers Andre Roux (2 IP, 4K) and Cole Bordes (1 IP, 2K) followed Cooper on the hill and closed out the game for the Pels, as a tandem giving up no earned runs and no hits.
On the day, Nunez was again led on offense by Detillier (6-for-9, 2 RBI’s). Zeringue (4-for 8, 4 RBI’s), Manson (3-for 6, 3 RBI’s), and Ellis (4-for-7).
Nunez – 002 400 1 – 7 10 1
La Christian – 000 110 0 – 2 2 0
W – Cooper L – Ardoin
Cooper, Adr Roux (5), Bordes (7)
and Webb, Rohlfs (4). Fabre, Ardoin (3),
Crain (5), Waxley (6), Windham (7), and Soto.
2B – Lyles, Soto. SF – Waxley.
• The Pelicans enjoyed dugout visits from baseball alumni Adrian Aguilar and Nick Brunet, who were both inactive for the Wildcats. Also, former Pel Dawson Ardoin pitched 2 innings for LCU in the nightcap.
• Nunez extended their CENLA win streak to 7-0 over the last 3 seasons, going 5-0 at LCU and 2-0 at LSU-Alexandria.
• The Pels are in the midst of a busy 48-hour period. After stepping off the bus on campus Thursday just before midnight, they rose early for 8AM Friday to assist with the Special Olympics being held at Chalmette High School. Then they will get ready for another early-morning departure on Saturday.
The Pelicans will journey back west to Crowley on Saturday morning, March 11 for a doubleheader with John Melvin University. First pitch from Miller Stadium with be 12 Noon.
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