SULPHUR — The South Beauregard Golden Knights got a trophy to add to their collection on Tuesday at the state baseball championships, but not the one they wanted.
No. 1 Sterlington scored all of its runs in the first inning to beat No. 3 South Beauregard 4-2 to win the Class 3A state championship.
South Beauregard (28-11) was playing in the final for the third time in four seasons after winning it all in 2017 plus a runner-up finish in 2016.
"These guys work very hard," South Beauregard head coach Jeremy Deville said. "That was our goal this year, to get to Sulphur and win a state championship and we fell a game short.
"I am very proud of these guys. We have been through a lot of adversity. We have had injuries all year. The guys stepped up and picked each other up."
Sterlington (35-4) got to South Beauregard starter Chase Fisher with five hits in the bottom of the first inning. South Beauregard got the first out when two-hole batter Seaver Sheets tried to leg out a double, but Braden Hough hit an RBI single and Parker Coley, the MVP of the championship game, hit a three-run triple to left field for a 4-0. Coley went 3-for-3 with three RBIs.
"(Sterlington) got the timely hits, especially in the first inning," Deville said. "They got a couple of big two-out hits that scored three runs. That was really the outcome of the game right there."
Gunnar Morgan pitched six scoreless innings of relief and South Beauregard found new life in the top of the fifth inning. Avery Davis reached on an error and Wyatt Beasley hit a single to left field. Leland Broussard put both runners in scoring position with a sacrifice bunt and Briton Coleman's hit to center field brought home two runs and cut the Panthers' lead in half.
South Beauregard loaded the bases with two outs when Jessie Broussard was hit by a pitch but couldn't push any more runs across.
"We had our chances with guys on the bases and the ball didn't fall our way," Deville said. "(Sterlington) got the timely hits and we didn't.
"It was a good baseball game. Unfortunately we fell short, but I am proud of my guys."
Adam Tubbs got the win for Sterlington, which won its second state title in three years and first in Class 3A. Tubbs held South Beauregard to two runs on three hits over 41⁄3 innings. Harrison Womack pitched the rest of the game to get the save.