Fontainebleau pitcher Brenae Bergeron admitted she was a bit nervous when No. 9 John Curtis brought the winning runs to the plate with no outs in the bottom of the seventh inning.
“We thought we were going to beat them, but nobody outside of our team thought that we could do it,” Bergeron said. “In the seventh, we knew we had to hold them. I was nervous, but I was trying not to show it. I just tried not to let it bother me.”
Clearly, it didn’t as Bergeron retired the final three batters in order to propel No. 24 Fontainebleau to a stunning 3-1 upset victory in a Class 5A first round playoff game at Curtis on Tuesday afternoon.
“As soon as you count this bunch out or you throw something at them, they are going to win,” Fontainebleau coach Chris Nelson said. “(Curtis) is a great team, a talented team. They’re a much more talented team than we are, but these girls just said that they were going to win today.”
The Bulldogs (14-7) will travel to No. 8 Central-Baton Rouge in the regional round later this week. The Wildcats knocked off Chalmette 17-2 on Monday.
Nelson said his team was loose — listening to Justin Bieber on the bus ride down — and it paid off in the fourth inning.
Haley Fremin opened the inning with an infield single and Nia Silvas was hit by a pitch to put two on with no outs. After a Bergeron sacrifice bunt, Alexis Fremin laced a two-run single to right. Kaylin Smith’s bases-loaded walk made it 3-0.
“I’m really happy that I could come through when we needed it the most, but yeah, I was surprised,” Alexis Fremin said. “I was really happy. It feels really good especially considering that they’re a nine seed, and we’re a 24. It’s a big win for us.”
The Patriots (19-8) cut into the lead in the bottom of the inning as Payton Adams’ sacrifice fly made it 3-1. Then the Fontainbleau defense and Bergeron took over as Toni Hebert struck out swinging with the bases loaded to limit the damage.
In the fifth, Jenna Bordelon was thrown out at the plate trying to score on a bunt, but the real drama came in the seventh.
Bordelon singled and Peyton Picou reached on an error to open the inning, but Bergeron buckled down. She got two infield pop-ups and a groundout to second to complete the upset.
“I knew my team was behind me, and I had faith in them,” said Bergeron, who allowed one run on four hits, one walk and three strikeouts in seven innings. “I knew we could pull it out. It feels great.”
Lydia Linden took the loss for Curtis allowing three runs on two hits and a walk in 3.1 innings. Toni Hebert pitched 3.2 innings of hitless relief to finish the game.
Curtis had won four straight state championships before moving up to Class 5A this season. Patriots coach Jerry Godfrey said his nine seniors left a positive legacy on the program.
“The difference in the game was 11 pop-ups,” v said. “Sometimes it goes that way, but I don’t know if there has been another group of seniors that has had as much success as they have. I couldn’t be prouder of them. They did a great job of leading us for a very long time.”
Nelson said his team has also left a mark at Fontainebleau.
“In over 20 years of coaching, there are certain games that I’m going to remember, and I can guarantee you until I pass away I’m going to remember the first round of the playoffs when we beat John Curtis on their home field,” he said.
The lone negative in the victory was that left fielder Haley Fremin hurt her knee running to first in the fifth inning. Nelson said she’ll be re-evaluated tomorrow.