Ryan Oubre admitted he had some pregame jitters.
The St. Martinville junior pitcher took the mound Tuesday against state powerhouse Tuerlings Catholic. The No. 3 pitcher in the Tigers rotation was expecting the worse facing a Rebels lineup that was averaging 6.5 runs per game, and 8.8 runs in District 5-4A action.
“I got worried at the beginning of the game,” Oubre said. “I figured they would be having batting practice off of me.”
That nervousness, though, proved to be unfounded as Oubre kept Teurlings hitters off balance in a 3-2 road victory. Oubre gave up two runs on three hits with five strikeouts.
“He did a great job,” St. Martinville coach Mike Lemoine said. “In this game, you don’t want to walk too many guys. You don’t give them anything for free. He pitched well today.”
Oubre gave up only one hit through the first six innings, but that didn’t mean Teurlings didn’t have opportunities to score. Oubre walked three and hit two more.
Teurlings leadoff hitter Caleb Lasseigne got on in the first via a walk and was joined on base by Jacob Richard who was hit by a pitch. After a double steal, Teurlings had two runners in scoring position with one out.
Oubre, though, struck out Andre Stelly and got Austin Kirkpatrick to ground out.
“The bad starts are going to happen,” Teurlings coach Mike Thibodeaux said. “We got runners on second and third with our four and five hitters coming to the plate, and we couldn’t score.”
St. Martinville (11-7, 4-2) meanwhile got to Teurlings starter Stelly right away. Stelley, who was coming off a no-hitter against Westgate, gave up three runs on two hits while walking three in one inning. Stelly was replaced by Josh Taylor starting in the second.
“He just didn’t have it today,” Thibodeaux said. “I could tell after we dropped the ball in left field that he wasn’t himself. I knew that we needed a change.”
Teurlings (14-8, 3-2) managed to get a run in the bottom of the second. Nick Webre laced a double down the first-base line and two batters later scored on a sacrifice bunt. Oubre settled down and retire the next nine batters.
“I just tried to stay calm and throw strikes and let my defense do the work,” Oubre said.
Things did get interesting in the bottom of the seventh.
Chaney Dodge led off with a double down the third-base line and scored after a peculiar chain of events. St. Martinville shortstop Cy Guidry made a backwards leaping catch to get the first out, but he and his teammates celebrated the spectacular catch a little too long. An alert Dodge stole third and the rushed throw to get him out went by the third baseman, which allowed Dodge to score.
“It just looked like they got excited out there, and we lost focus,” Lemoine said. “Teurlings is too good of a team for us to lose focus.”
Nathan Arceneaux then reached base on a hard hit infield single and then stole second base. Oubre then walked Lasseigne putting the tying the run on base.
Oubre wrap up the game by getting Hayden Cantrelle to fly out to deep right field and have Jacob Richard ground out.
“Those guys deserved to win today,” Thibodeaux said. “They just played better than we did. It’s very humbling.”
There are now three teams with two losses each in District 5-4A competing for second place as St. Thomas More remains undefeated in district play.
“For us to go out and win a game like this is going to help us earn respect down the road,” Lemoine said.