However, the 16th seeded Panthers bounced back with their own two-run home run and hung on for a 5-2 win in the first round of the Class-AAA baseball playoffs. With the loss, the Gents ended the regular season with a 14-12-1 record.
Bunkie, who improved to 19-9 on the season, will now travel to Crowley on Tuesday to face the #1 seeded Notre Dame Pios. The game is set for 6 p.m.
Crowley second baseman Mackay Morton hit a 0-1 pitch in the fourth inning over the left-center field fence to cut into the Bunkie lead, 3-2.
“I thought we were back in the ball game at that point especially with a freshman hitting the home run,” Coach Doughty said. “I felt we could make a run but we could never string hits together to score runs.”
While Crowley could never put the hits together, the Panthers were getting key hits when they needed them. Crowley miscues also set the table for Bunkie.
In the first inning they used three hits and two Crowley errors to jump out to a 2-0 lead. A two out single by Tyler Gremillion with two outs plated Bunkie’s second run of the inning. Nick Robeau has singled and scored earlier in the inning on a wild pitch.
In the third inning, Caleb Strong of Bunkie was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning. He stole second base and scored on a two out single by Christian Cole.
The final two runs came in the bottom of the fourth when Blake Guillot reached on an outfield error and Robeau collected his second hit of the game with a two-run shot over the left-center field fence to give Bunkie a 5-2 lead.
“We had a good pitching effort by Blake Guillot tonight but I still think the key was us getting timely hits,” Bunkie Head Coach Frankie Palermo said after the game. “I was pleased with our focus from the players and must credit the assistant coaches for getting them ready to play tonight. It was a total team effort.”
While Bunkie had key hits, pitcher Blake Guillot shut down the Gents. He struck out 11 Crowley batters and scattered six hits in the complete game win. The fourth inning was the only time Crowley put two hits together in the same inning. Steven Bertand had two hits in the game for Crowley, including a leadoff single to start the fourth inning and set up Morton’s home run.
“I was disappointed with our overall intensity for the game and I felt maybe nerves got us,” Coach Doughty continued. “However, I don’t want to take away from the pitching effort of Guillot. He pitch a good game and we didn’t do what we needed to do at the plate to get to him.”
Coach Palermo said it wasn’t the best game that Guillot had pitch this year but he did have a good game.
“He threw one really bad pitch all game and it was hit out of the ball park,” Coach Palermo said. “Even though the score was 3-2 at the time, I was confident that Guillot would continue to pitch well and the rest of the team would score more runs. In the end, we live to play another day.”