ZACHARY — Designated hitter Micah McHugh doesn’t belabor the point when he steps in the batter’s box.
On the first two pitches the Zachary senior saw from Parkview Baptist’s Pryce Fletcher, McHugh doubled in a run in the first and homered in the fifth.
For McHugh, an Ole Miss signee, it added up to a season-high six RBIs to power Zachary to a 10-2 victory Monday over Parkview Baptist at John Herty Field.
“I always go for the first pitch because that’s usually the best pitch,” said McHugh, who was 3-for-3.
Zachary (12-3) closed out play in the Landmark Bank Invitational with a 4-0 record, while Parkview Baptist (7-6) lost for the first time in the event.
“Missed opportunities,” PBS coach Darron Mitchell said. “Tip your hat to them. They threw strikes when they had to and made plays when they had to. Of course they got the timely hits. I thought we competed and we did well until the very end.”
PBS built leads of 1-0 and 2-1 going into the third inning.
Parkview Baptist had six of their seven hits off Burk through four innings with Adam Tarver’s first-inning single and Hayden Nickens’ third-inning, RBI-double off the wall accounting for the Eagles’ runs.
Burk, a sophomore bidding for either a No. 3 or 4 spot in Zachary’s rotation, flirted with a complete-game effort, but was lifted with two outs in the seventh following his second walk of the game.
He (2-1) threw 60 of 109 pitches for strikes and had two strikeouts.
“Burk answered when they got a couple of singles; he threw strikes to help himself get out of his own jam,” Zachary coach Jesse Cassard said. “He had command of the strike zone, which is something we challenged him with. He did a great job.”
Shortstop Bo Myers turned a couple of double plays to lead Zachary’s defense, wich also featured a spectacular diving catch in center from Doug Coleman off the bat of Sam O’Brien to lead off the fifth.
Zachary took the lead for good with three runs three hits in the fifth to make it 4-2 and reeled off nine unanswered runs.
No. 9 hitter Mikey Rider (2-3) ignited the go-ahead inning with a lead-off single, P.J. Cannon walked with both runners moving up on Gabe Hannum’s sacrifice bunt.
Catcher Evan Pace (2-3, 2 RBIs) singled sharply off the foot of Fletcher and into shallow center, enabling Rider to score the go-ahead run with McHugh’s two-run single, scoring Hannum and courtesy runner Cornelius Ford.
McHugh helped Zachary, which had 10 hits, break the game open in the fifth with a three-run homer — his team-leading fourth — and first baseman Hunter David greeted reliever Andrew Lemoine with a two-run single.
The Broncos added an unearned run in the sixth on Pace’s sacrifice fly to right.
“We probably have the best offensive team we’ve had in the four years I’ve been here,” McHugh said. “We’re averaging 8-9 (runs) a game, which is great. It’s pretty hard to beat us.”