Bucs add another ring

Warren Arceneaux

SULPHUR — Barbe capped its dominant season with another masterful pitching performance from Gavin Guidry in a 5-0 win over West Monroe Saturday in the Class 5A state championship game.

Guidry threw a two-hit shutout, striking out nine, to earn the game’s MVP honor and complete a commanding postseason by he and fellow starter Jack Walker.

Barbe (39-2) took control with a three-run third. Kyle DeBarge doubled down the left-field line to lead off the bottom of the third and scored on a J.C. Vanek single. A throwing error allowed Vanek to score. Grant Comeaux added an RBI single.

In the fourth, Vanek doubled to score DeBarge to extend the lead to 4-0.

Guidry walked the bases loaded in the top of the third inning, but escaped with a pair of strikeouts to avoid any damage.

Owen Galt reached on an error and scored on a Kam Edwards sacrifice fly in the sixth to make the score 5-0.

In 51 playoff innings, Guidry and Walker combined to allow five runs and 12 hits while striking out 78. They combined on an 11-inning no-hitter in a 1-0 semifinal win over Sam Houston.

“I didn’t have my best stuff tonight, but coach (Glenn Cecchini) stresses you still have to find a way to win,” Guidry said. “My slider was working so I started throwing more of those, then they started cheating for the slider and getting more barrel on it, so I went back to the fastball.”

Vanek worked the middle of the field and opposite way for his three hits.

“I wanted to stay back and not get it in front and be pull-heavy,” he said. “I got curveballs my first two at-bats and waited on them, then my last one I got a fastball and put a good swing on it.”

Edwards, like Vanek, a lefty, had a single and RBI.

“It feels great; everything I dreamed of came true,” Edwards said. “We worked hard all offseason and dedicated ourselves to baseball.”

Cecchini said his pitching duo was special.

“Neither one of them lost a game all year. To give up so few runs during the playoffs is unheard of,” he said. “I’m so happy for the kids. Everybody played a part in it.”

The Bucs won their 11th state title in 13 championship game appearances. The 39-2 record matches the best 5A record — along with Barbe’s 2014 team, Cecchini said.

 
 

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Donovan LaSalle, left, and Jack Walker jump on the pile after Barbe blanked West Monroe to win the Class 5A state championship Saturday night at McMurry Park in Sulphur.

Rick Hickman / American Press