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Ups and downs help prepare Pels for district play

Written by Claire Chenevert on .

During a week filled with highs and lows, the Port Allen Pelicans baseball team have found that they are still in the process of finding their identity, according to Pels Head Baseball Coach Josh Laborde.

The Pels began their week with a colossal comeback against McKinley Tuesday at home. The Pels were off to their usual slow start, and by the fourth inning, found themselves down 3-6 when freshman Payson Swarner ignited the team’s revival with a suicide squeeze.

“He executed it really well,” said Laborde. “He gave the team life, and we were able to tie the game.”

After that, he said, the Pels were unstoppable. Port Allen dominated McKinley with a final score of 14-6.

Thursday, the Pels played their first game in the Doyle Tournament against Holden.

“We played a good game,” said Laborde. “We were pretty much 0-2 the whole game.”

In the end, the Pelicans were unable to maintain the two point difference, and ultimately lost 0-8.

Friday the Pels found themselves at an all-time low as their game against Scotlandville was called after three innings. Port Allen lost 0-23 to Scotlandville. The boys followed up the tough loss with a late night practice, and turned things around Saturday with a win over Amite.

Port Allen and Amite were tied 5-5 from the fourth inning to the ninth.

“We had opportunities to score runs, but we kept making basic, mental mistakes,” said Laborde.

With the bases loaded and two outs against them, B.J. McClay got the game-winning hit, allowing Lorenzo Osborne to score the final run as the Pels beat Amite 6-5.

“We stuck with it,” said Laborde. “I think it’s good for the guys to be in those challenging situations, especially with district coming up next week.”

Alex Hebert pitched all nine innings, with ten strikeouts and only three walks.

“(Hebert) did a fantastic job on the mound,” said Laborde. “We’re still learning a lot and trying to figure ourselves out as a team, but the guys are really doing a great job.”

The Pelicans will face their first district opponent, U-High, at home Tuesday at 4 p.m. and again Thursday at U-High at 4 p.m. The team will conclude their week with an away game Saturday against McKinley at 1 p.m.

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