The Haynes Academy Yellow Jackets defeated the Fisher Gators 5-2 to secure the District 9-2A championship Tuesday evening in Lafitte.
It was Haynes’ first district title.
“It feels great,” Haynes coach Steve Stropolo said. “These kids have been working hard, and they deserve it.”
The Yellow Jackets scored two runs in both the second and third innings and also added an insurance run in the seventh.
Haynes starting pitcher Kirk Hanson improved to 8-0.Hanson labored through most of the game — he walked six and hit two in 6.1 innings — but found a way to minimize the damage. He was removed in the seventh with the bases loaded and one out.
“I’ve never had (to deal with) as much adversity as this game,” Hanson said. “I wasn’t finding the zone as much. It was a battle every inning, but (Josh) came in and closed it out when we needed it.”
Josh Gebo, who started the day in center field, relieved Hanson and secured the win with back-to-back strikeouts.
“I felt a lot of pressure,” Gebo said. “But it was good to know I had the support of my coach and my teammates. I was a little nervous, but when I got that first strike over the plate, everything was smooth.”
The game became heated in the later stages.
Fisher first baseman Jimmy LaCross was ejected in the sixth inning when he threw his bat and did not pick it up after striking out. That prompted an argument between the home plate umpire and Fisher coach Duane Foret, which ultimately resulted in Foret’s ejection.
The tension carried into the top of the seventh when Gators pitcher Nick Daniels was ejected after nearly hitting Hanson in the head with a pitch shortly after throwing behind Hanson earlier in the at-bat.
Daniels also argued with the home plate umpire and had to be restrained by the field umpire. The anger spread into the stands, as spectators voiced their displeasure, one even walking onto the field to do so.