SULPHUR — Just because third-seeded Kaplan won its Class 3A quarterfinals game in convincing fashion Friday didn’t mean it was done working for the afternoon.
Almost immediately after posting an 8-0 win against sixth-seeded Iota (20-6) at the Allstate Sugar Bowl/LHSAA Fast Pitch 56 tournament, Kaplan coach Shay Herpin and many of the Pirates (25-4) could be found on an adjacent field watching the final innings of a 3A quarterfinal between No. 2 St. Charles and No. 7 Brusly in an attempt to get a little scouting done on their next opponent.
“I haven’t seen either of these teams play,” Herpin said. “I’m trying to find out as much as possible.”
Brusly defeated the Comets 10-5, setting up a semifinal between the Pirates and the Bulldogs at 1 p.m Saturday for a spot in the title game set for 7 p.m.
But if the Pirates dominate in all facets Friday.
Kaplan tallied two runs in the first inning and consistently built on its lead while stifling the Bulldogs’ offense.
The Pirates scored runs in all but one inning, and Kaplan junior pitcher Abby Trahan allowed just two hits in a complete-game.
Trahan also contributed with her bat, hitting 3-for-4 with a double and an RBI. Kaplan senior catcher Kailey LeJeune went 3-for-4, tallying two doubles and an RBI.
“I think we’re relaxing a little more, and that’s key for us,” Herpin said. “Some of our hitters feel a lot of tension, and we were able to relax in certain situations today, especially when we took a lead. We just had a little bit of fun.”
The Pirates came into the tournament carrying heavy hearts, as they mourned the recent death of a classmate.
Herpin said his team found it difficult to focus throughout the week, but that he couldn’t be more proud of the way the Pirates handled the adversity and put together a complete performance.
“That’s very difficult to deal with, that situation,” Herpin said. “(Thursday) we decided to come up early, connect as a team and try to get our focus back, and I think we did that. … That’s a hard thing to do.
“We did a good job of just being composed and really understand the situation and how much work we put into this.”