LAFAYETTE — After Teurlings Catholic absorbed some long strikes by St. Thomas More, the final decision came down to 90 feet.
When Teurlings’ Matt McMillan was hit by a pitch in a bases-loaded situation, Garrett Boudreaux was able to walk home to score the winning run, as the Rebels captured an 8-7 comeback win over the Cougars on Saturday at the Rebels’ baseball diamond.
“We are normally a very good bunting team, and we had a beautiful (squeeze) bunt travel 80-something feet down the line before it trailed off foul,” Teurlings coach Mike Thibodeaux said. “You know a team will probably throw high in that situation.”
Austin Kirkpatrick’s run-scoring triple earlier in the bottom of the seventh scored Nick Webre for the tying run and helped set the stage for the game-winner. The Cougars followed the triple by issuing a pair of intentional walks to set up potential force plays at every base.
“We gambled and we loaded it up and after that, we hit the batter,” STM coach Gary Perkins said. “That’s a hard way to lose a ball game, but then again, I think it’s our fault that we allowed them back in the game. But good teams find a way to win.”
Teurlings’ path to victory included overcoming a 6-2 deficit that the Cougars created largely on the strength of a pair of two-run homers by second baseman Will Bellamy. The first one came in the third inning on an 0-2 pitch and momentarily evened the score at 2. After Brennan Langlinais laced a two-run single to make it 4-2, Bellamy’s second shot in the fourth accounted for a four-run advantage.
“Those guys at the top of the order did exactly what you are supposed to do,” Perkins said. “If the pitcher pitches you away, then you hit away. We did a good job hitting the ball middle away today at the top of the lineup.”
The Rebels (20-3, 4-0 in District 4-4A) gradually came back by scoring once in the fourth on a dropped fly ball. They added another run later on a groundout before Cougars leadoff man Mason Templet hit a towering solo shot to right-center in the sixth that put St. Thomas More (8-12, 2-2) ahead 7-4.
“We played a tough game,” Thibodeaux said. “We knew we would see a left-handed pitcher that we would have to stay back and not try to do too much at the plate. Guys came through at the end.”
Bellamy finished 4-for-4 with four RBIs. Kade Sonnier was 1-for-3 for the Rebels with two RBIs. Hayden Cantrelle got the win for the Rebels after he went from shortstop to the mound in relief of starter Josh Taylor.
“Belief is a powerful force, and we are excited about how things turned out,” Thibodeaux said. “It was a great team performance.”