Barbe sets up rematch with Rebels in finals

Published 12:34 am Friday, May 10, 2024

SULPHUR — No. 1 Barbe survived a pitcher’s duel with some big plays to beat No. 13 Benton on Thursday 4-1 in the Nonselect Division I semifinals at the LHSAA state baseball tournament at McMurry Park.

The Bucs will get a rematch with West Monroe in the finals on Saturday at 5:30 p.m. Barbe won last year 10-4 after scoring nine runs in the seventh inning, including Donovan LaSalle’s grand slam.

Barb’e Diego Corrales and Benton’s Kade Bryant kept hitters guessing and the game was scoreless until the Bucs struck in the bottom of the fifth. It started with their traditional small ball when Brit Vick’s sacrifice bunt put Ja’Derryian Washington in scoring position. Myles Ledoux hit an RBI single and Owen Galt followed with a two-run for a 3-0 lead.

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Corrales pitched his second complete game in the postseason with one earned run on six hits, six strikeouts and no walks. He has allowed three earned runs in 20.1 innings in the playoffs.

Bryant was relieved by Tanner Webb in the bottom of the sixth with no outs after allowing four runs on seven hits with four strikeouts and one walk.

The Bucs (34-6) got a huge defensive play from freshman center fielder Jordin Griffin in the top of the sixth inning. The Tigers (31-11) loaded the bases on back-to-back singles by Hudson Brignac and Bryson Pierce and a hit batter. Caleb Frey hit a fly ball to shallow center field, but Griffin sprinted to the ball, made a diving catch, rolled and got back up on his feet to throw out Bryson Pierce at second for an inning-ending double play.