Sterlington 5, Cedar Creek 4
Sterlington scored all five of its runs in the bottom of the third and survived an adventurous seventh inning to nip Cedar Creek 5-4 in the Lakeside Tournament.
Due to the threat of severe weather Saturday, three games were moved from Sibley to Panther Park under a revised schedule Friday night. Sterlington and Cedar Creek both defeated D'Arbonne Woods prior to meeting in the nightcap.
Cedar Creek put the leadoff man aboard in the first two frames only to come up empty.
Chandler Hay opened the game with a double to right-center and moved up 90 feet on Pearce Simmons' bunt. From there, Sterlington starter Harrison Womack received some help from his defense. Third baseman Zach Jones knocked down a shot from Brooks Auger and first baseman Brock Risinger scooped up the low throw for the second out. Shortstop Seaver Sheets thens went deep into the hole to rob Reed Grayson on what appeared to be a sure hit, and made the long throw to first base for the inning-ending out.
After yielding an infield hit to Jared Miller to start the second, Womack struck out the side.
Auger cruised through the first two frames, striking out three of the Panthers' first six batters and retiring two more on grounders back to the mound.
Cedar Creek broke through for an unearned run in the third when J.T. Stephens reached on a leadoff error, Auger was hit by a pitch with two away and Reed lashed an RBI single to left.
Rewarded for their patience at the plate, the Panthers capitalized on five walks while seeing 55 pitches in a five-run third.
Parker Coley got it started with a base hit to right, stole second and scored on consecutive walks by Kyle Elee, Womack and Reece Brooks. Sheets then pulled a two-run double inches inside the right field line to put Sterlington up 3-1.
Braden Hough, batting from the No. 3 hole, walked to reload the bases with still nobody out.
Two batters later, Davis Johnson drew a one-out free pass to force Brooks across, and Sheets dashed home on a wild pitch.
Sterlington would not get another runner past first base, but neither would the Cougars until sending nine batters to the plate in the seventh.
Walks to Hay and Auger, sandwiched around Pearce's base hit, jammed the sacks and brought the tying run to the plate with nobody out.
Grayson's sacrifice fly to Coley in right field plated Hay.
With two down, Garrett Madden walked to rejuice the bases, Collin Hill reached on an error and Josh Parks took a pitch off the top of the batting helmet to bring the Cougars within 5-4.
Nick Whittington then escaped the jam with a game-ending punchout.
Womack (2-0, 0.00 ERA) fanned five, walked one, hit one and allowed three hits through five innings for the win. Hayes Crockett came on for one-plus inning with Whittington recording his second save.
Sterlington (9-1) collected three of its four hits in the decisive third inning. Sheets doubled with base hits by Brooks, Risinger and Coley.
Cedar Creek out-hit the Panthers 5-4 as Simmons went 2-for-3, Hay doubled and Auger, Grayson and Miller singled.
Auger was dealt the loss in 3.1 innings of work. Graham Clary and Hay combined for 2.2 scoreless innings out of the bullpen for the Cougars (8-3).
Sterlington returns to action at home against Ouachita Christian on Monday at 6 p.m.