John Curtis defeated Vidalia 5-0 in a Class 3A region playoff game Thursday in New Orleans.
The top-seeded Patriots improved to 23-5 and advanced to the quarterfinals of the Allstate Sugar Bowl/LHSAA Fast Pitch 56 tournament May 1 and 2 in Sulphur. The Patriots will take on Notre Dame, a 15-0 winner over Loranger on Thursday afternoon. .
Toni Hebert got the scoring started for Curtis with a three-run homer to center field in the first inning after the first two Patriots batters reached.
“I went up to bat and swung at one over my head,” she said. “I just gathered myself, relaxed and ... drove one over that put us up 3-0.”
Curtis added one more run in the inning on an unusual three-base error to go up 4-0. They were blanked after that until the fifth inning when Hebert drove in her fourth run on a sacrifice fly.
Curtis pitcher Peyton Pigniolo had a strong outing on the mound, pitching a complete game and allowing only five base runners to reach. She did not give up a hit until the sixth inning and struck out 14.
“Every game I go in their telling myself I need to strike everyone out,” Pigniolo said. “When I start out strong, I think it picks the team up.”
The Patriots defeated the Notre Dame 5-4 earlier in the season.
“It gets no easier from here,” Curtis coach Jeff Godfrey said. “We knew going in we would have a tough road. ... We need to bring our ‘A’ game again. They’re very good.”