Something had to give between two lower seeds that took the hard road to the Class 1A state championship game.
Only one run separated No. 7 Cedar Creek and No. 9 Sacred Heart of Ville Platte through three innings of baseball until the Warriors (23-9) tied the score in the fourth.
The title was there for one of these teams to take, and following the final out, its going to the Creek.
Scoring four runs in the bottom of the fourth, Cedar Creek blew past Sacred Heart with a 5-1 win and claim the 1A state championship.
“I told the kids before the game I’ve been a head coach for 8 years here in baseball and 4 in football and I’ve never won a championship. It was time for that to change,” said Cedar Creek coach Ben Haddox, who was the shortstop on the school’s last baseball state champion in 2000.
“This was a correlation of what they did. They let me come along for the ride and I just loved watching them out there.”
Cedar Creek pulled out front in the fourth after a Sacred Heart scored Jacob Brown following Cole Frasier reaching base on a single. Huff McIntosh’s drove two in with an RBI to make it 4-1 Cougars (31-5).
Aaron Hunt beat out a chopper to first base which allowed Wes Gresham to score on the throw to the bag for the fifth run.
Hunt was named the game’s Most Outstanding Player with a 2-for-2, 2 RBI performance.
“It just came back to everything our coaches taught us,” Hunt said. “We just went back to the basics when we were struggling at first, but once we finally got back to it everything went uphill for us.”
Sacred Heart drove in its only run on a Keaton Tate base hit that brought across Garrick Fontenot.
The Warriors managed 10 hits to Cedar Creek’s five and had runners in position to score throughout the opening two innings, but left 13 runners on base.
“That was it,” Sacred Heart coach Cody Vidrine said. “We faced a good quality team in a championship situation and you can’t do that. That’s how the ball bounces and baseball is a tough game sometimes.”
Tate and Brandon Hudspeth each hit a pair of singles to lead Sacred Heart at the plate.
Grant Clary started the game for Cedar Creek and went four innings before giving way to Mark Van. The two seniors got the win and the save respectively in their last game as Cougars.