Sterlington 5, St. Frederick 1

Trey Rugg carried a shutout into the seventh as Sterlington wrapped up its own tournament with a 5-1 decision over St. Frederick on Saturday night at Panther Park.

Sterlington (13-4) needed just three batters to manufacture a run after Rugg worked a three-up, three-down first.

Jarrett McDonald waylaid a double to center field and moved to third when Jacob Barr beat out a bunt single without a throw. Brooks Rushworth's squeeze bunt plated McDonald for a 1-0 Panthers' lead.

Sterlington upped the spread to 3-0 in the third.

Davis Johnson and McDonald singled and Barr sacrificed to put runners at second and third with nobody out. Two batters later, Dalton Dopson went the opposite way for a two-out single to right, allowing Johnson to trot home. Dopson was trapped in a rundown between first and second, but was able to keep the defense occupied long enough for McDonald to score from second base.

Sterlington added two more in the sixth to go up 5-0.

"Picking up two runs in the bottom of the sixth was big," Sims said. "That lets you breath a little easier."

Sterlington loaded the bases without the ball leaving the infield as Carson Clowers legged out a bunt single between walks to Dopson and Braden Hough. Spencer Davis and pinch-hitter Luke Fluitt drove in runs with a groundout to shortstop and a sacrifice fly to close out the Panthers' scoring.

Rugg, meanwhile, had a stress-free outing going. St. Fred managed only three base runners through the first six innings, none of whom advanced beyond second base.

After allowing a leadoff base hit to Parker Fulger in the second, the sophomore right-hander retired eight straight.

Graham Barham walked to start the fifth and Jett Polk doubled to left-center with two down in the sixth, but neither advanced.

With two away in the seventh, Weston Swanner boomed a double to straight-away center and Stephen Cagle singled to break up the shutout. Pinch-hitter Grant Evans followed with another base hit. With Rugg's pitch count at 99, Will Wohlers was called in from the bullpen to record the final out.

"We knew they were taking until they got a strike," Sims said. "You have to tip your hat to the pinch-hitter. I could have left Rugg in for one more batter, but there's no sense in running guys over 100 pitches right now."

Backed by an error-free defense, Rugg struck out seven, walked one and allowed five hits.

McDonald doubled, singled and scored twice to lead the Panthers' eight-hit effort. Johnson went 2-for-3, and Barr, Dopson, Clowers and Hough singled.

Polk and Swanner doubled, and Fulger, Cagle and Evans singled for the Warriors (9-6).

UP NEXT: Sterlington visits Downsville Charter on Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. before returning home for two — Thursday vs. Claiborne Christian at 6 p.m., and Saturday vs. Jonesboro-Hodge at 1 p.m.