LAFAYETTE —Catholic’s baseball team continued its early-season success Tuesday with a 6-0 victory at Teurlings Catholic behind the performance of senior pitcher and Tulane commitment Ross Massey.
The Bears (14-2) took a 1-0 lead in the first inning, and that proved to be all they needed as Massey kept the Rebels at bay throughout, tossing a complete-game shutout. He allowed five hits and struck out six.
“We’re not going to see many arms like Massey’s,” Teurlings coach Michael Thibodeaux said. “There is a reason he’s a commitment to a major university. He was very good today, and he’s the best pitcher we’ve seen this year.”
Despite Massey’s prowess on the mound, Teurlings (8-5) managed to put people on base in six of seven innings.
But Catholic’s defensive mistakes were few and far between, as the Rebels stranded six baserunners.
“We have to learn how to be tougher in the box,” Thibodeaux said. “We didn’t have enough quality at-bats to make (Massey) feel pressure. … It’s frustrating because we had a few chances against a very good arm. But he made big pitches, and he beat us in those tough situations.”
Teurlings’ best opportunity came in the fifth inning when senior center fielder Nathan Arceneaux hit a double and reached third base with one out and the Rebels still trailing by a run.
But senior second baseman Caleb Lasseigne’s sacrifice fly attempt resulted in a shallow pop-up near third base and sophomore shortstop Hayden Cantrelle grounded out to end the inning.
“Coming into this season we wanted to pride ourselves on pitching, throwing strikes and playing defense behind it,” Catholic coach Brad Bass said.
That proved to be Teurlings’ last chance to tie the game. The Bears took the momentum from the stop and put together five runs in the final two innings to further secure their lead.
After pitching five solid innings in which he allowed only one run and four hits, things fell apart for Rebels junior pitcher Brett Weber, as he gave up two runs and four hits in the sixth inning, leading Thibodeaux to call on his bullpen.
Teurlings senior Brannon Broussard and junior Tanner Edney allowed a combined three runs and three hits in the final inning.
“With a team as well-coached and as disciplined as Teurlings is, you have to put some runs on the board,” Bass said. “They stoned (slowed) us up for a while. Fortunately for us, our guys got an opportunity to score some runs and took advantage of it late.”
The bigger lead seemed to allow Massey to get comfortable, as he allowed one hit and tallied three of his strikeouts in the sixth and seventh innings.
“Ross is going to give you an opportunity to win every time he walks out onto the mound,” Bass said. “He had a great outing, some guys made some great defensive plays, we got some big offensive hits. When you get him some run support, you have a good chance to win.”