MANDEVILLE — Amanda Lassus didn’t want to leave anything to chance.
Especially after what happened last year.
So with a chance to end Fontainebleau’s Class 5A first-round softball playoff game against St. Scholastica an inning early, the Bulldogs senior catcher did so with a leadoff home run in the sixth to give her team an 11-1 mercy rule victory against the Doves here Tuesday.
The victory advances Fontainebleau (24-4) to a regional round game at home Friday against another District 6-5A foe, Northshore, a 12-2 winner against Haughton on Tuesday. A trip to next week’s state tournament in Sulphur will be on the line.
“It was there, so I took it,” Lasssus said of her home run. “I wasn’t really thinking about getting it over with or anything.
“But it nice to get it done.”
Getting it done was what Fontainebleau didn’t do last year.
The Bulldogs were leading visiting East Ascension, 3-1, after three innings of their first-round game when heavy rain halted play.
There was so much rain the game couldn’t be resumed until two days later. And when EAHS did return, the Spartans rallied for a 7-3 victory.
“That stayed with us a long while,” Lassus said. “And it kept pushing us and pushing us to get where we are now.”
Where the Bulldogs are is at the brink of the state tournament, something they failed to achieve in 2010 and 2011. Fontainebleau has won district championships last season and this year.
They’ll be trying to advance Friday against a team they swept 10-5 and 8-1.
“It’s been highly frustrating,” said Lassus, one of five seniors on the roster. “Normally, it’s been ourselves pushing us down.
“This year, we’re not letting it happen.”
Fontainebleau made sure of that at least in the first round Tuesday by jumping on SSA (12-14) for three runs in the first inning, two in the second and four in the third.
The Doves, who had lost 8-1 and 8-3 to the Bulldogs in district play, didn’t help themselves with seven errors.
“They’ve already got 21 outs,” SSA Coach Charles Richard said. “And then we gave them 28.
“They were mostly on routine plays, too, which has been our Achilles’ heel all season. And the way Fontainebleau swings the bats, you just can’t do that.”
Along with benefiting from the SSA errors, Fontainebleau had 10 hits scattered among seven players. Mattie Pierre, Megan Meyer, and Olivia Wineskin had two each for the winners.
SSA had only two hits off Fontainebleau pitchers Shelby Rome and Savannah False, who relieved Rome in the third after she had walked three straight. Folse got Morgan Bounds on a groundout to first that brought in Erica Yeager with the Doves’ first and only run.
“You never take anything for granted in the playoffs,” Fontainebleau Coach Chris Nelson said. “That’s something we’ve been pounding into the girls all week — the finality of the playoffs.
“Somebody moves on and somebody stays home. You couldn’t ask for anything better than two teams from our district playing each other to go to Sulphur.”