Conner HR highlights five-run fifth for Tarpons

South Cameron’s Shyla Duplechin (26) gets the tag for an out on Delta Charter’s Skylar Hawley (24) during the LHSAA Softball State Tournament Class A semi-final at Frasch Park in Sulphur, Louisiana on Friday, April 27, 2018. (AP Photo/Lake Charles American Press, Kirk Meche)

Kirk Meche

{{tncms-inline alignment=”left” content=”<p class="p1"><span class="s1"><strong>S. Cameron </strong></span><span class="s1"><strong>16, </strong></span><span class="s1"><strong>Delta Charter </strong></span><span class="s1"><strong>5</strong></span></p> <p class="p1"><span class="s1"><strong>5 innings</strong></span></p>” id=”08e37f95-b5fa-4931-9c8e-48412546b4f8″ style-type=”fact” title=”Class 1A | Quarterfinals” type=”relcontent” width=”half”}}

SULPHUR — Senior Maeleigh Conner’s three-run home helped spark a seven-run fifth inning to lead South Cameron to a 16-5 five-inning run-rule win over Delta Charter on Friday in the Class 1A quarterfinals.

No. 3 Delta Charter managed to cut the No. 6 Tarpons’ lead to 9-4 with two runs in the bottom of the third and one in the fourth.

Conner was 0-for-3 in her previous trips to the plate, but belted a 1-0 pitch to left field for a three-run home run and a 12-4 lead. The Tarpons ended up batting around in the fifth, scoring seven runs and Conner hit an RBI single in her second at-bat of the inning.

“She is a tremendous player for us and had been a tremendous player all year long,” South Cameron head coach Brenda Trahan said. “She is a great senior leader. 

“She has given everything to this program for every year that she has played. It is so fitting for her to come up big in the moment and on this stage.”

Conner finished 2-for-5 as the Tarpons collected 12 hits. Shelby Welch went 2-for-4 with four runs scored, Karlee Nunez went 2-for-2 with two RBIs and three runs scored and Marley Thibodeaux went 3-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI.

“That is the one thing that we have been really good at all year long,” Trahan said. “We just put the bat on the ball and make good swings. 

“Even when we hit into outs, it is quality at bats. We are going to be a tough out in this tournament the way the girls are focused up now.”

Delta leadoff hitter Skylar Bolyer went 3-for-3 with a triple, run scored and an RBI and Darby Beach went 2-for-3 with a solo home run in the bottom of the fifth inning.

South Cameron will get a rematch with LaSalle in the semifinals at 9 a.m. today on Field 14. LaSalle beat the Tarpons 16-0 in three innings last year, but Trahan said his team is focusing on what it can do.

“They have a great ballclub with a lot of great players,” Trahan said. “We faced them last year in the semifinals. They came out and played a great game and got on top of us.

“But we are focused on us right now and what we are doing right. We are hoping we keep doing what we are doing tomorrow and upset the state.”

Trahan said his team has played above expectations all season.

“This year we kind of been proving a lot of people wrong all year long,” Trahan said. “These girls have had the mind-set and have been determined from the start. 

“Even when we had a little rocky road in the middle of the season, the girls stayed focused and they keep on working.”

S. Cameron 16, Delta Charter 5

5 innings