For Redemptorist’s baseball team it’s been all about living up to a preseason mantra in hopes of enjoying the spoils of postseason play.
First-year coach Nick Hall has infused this year’s Wolves with a passion and work ethic that’s caught on just in time heading into the start of District 7-2A play.
Redemptorist broke a 2-all tie with two runs in the bottom of the sixth and winning pitcher Blake Landry worked a perfect seventh to give the Wolves their fourth consecutive victory — a 4-2 home win against West Feliciana Saturday afternoon.
“From the very beginning, when I got on campus in July, my only goal was to play hard, and the rest will follow,” Hall said. “The more we play hard that’s an advantage, and the more advantages we get through the course of a game the breaks are going to start going our way.”
Redemptorist (9-6) took advantage of a fielding error when Jacob Stagg scored the go-ahead run with one out and added some insurance on Cameron Callihan’s sacrifice fly to center, driving in his twin brother Conner Callihan.
The Wolves, who had led 2-1 since the third inning, seemingly lost some of their momentum in the top half of the sixth when the Saints tied the game on a two-out passed ball only to regroup in the bottom half of the inning.
“They’ve been in that situation before,” Hall said. “It’s nothing new. They’ve been battling all year long, and that was kind of a testament to how hard they’ve been battling and how hard they’ve been working.”
Landry (4-2) threw 101 pitches in his complete game but retired West Feliciana in order with Jay Kimbrough capping the victory with a terrific running catch off Josh Lowe’s bat that sent the left fielder crashing into the fence.
Landry, who threw 63 strikes, scattered six hits, walked two and struck out four.
“You’ve got to give it to Redemptorist,” West Feliciana coach Dale Reich said. “They came out ready to play. I didn’t see the fire that I saw in them. Every opportunity we gave them they capitalized on. It shouldn’t have been a two-run game. We shot ourselves in the foot.”
West Feliciana (6-12) outhit Redemptorist 6-4, but the Saints left eight men on base, including six in scoring position, and committed five errors that led to three unearned runs and made Trey Morgan a hard-luck loser.
Morgan (3-2) yielded four singles and only two through the first five innings. He walked two and struck out four in his 96-pitch effort.
The teams traded runs in the first with left fielder Will Costinett (1-for-2) driving in a run for West Feliciana only to have Landry respond with a run-scoring single to left with two outs.
Redemptorist grabbed a 2-1 lead in third inning when Russell Gage scored from third base on the back end of a double steal.
Gage reached third on a two-out error off the bat of Stagg, who then took off for second before Morgan could deliver a pitch to Landry. When Morgan stepped off the mound his throw glanced off of Stagg and into shallow right field, enabling Gage to score the first of his two runs.
“We preach play hard, and good things will happen,” Hall said. “We have a young team, but that’s been our motto and they’re starting to buy in.”