An emotionally-charged rally late Friday night highlighted an impressive showing for the Live Oak softball team in one of the year’s biggest tournaments.

A few hours after opening the Sulphur Tournament with an 8-3 loss to Barbe Friday afternoon, Laynie Jones blasted a walk-off, two-run double to help the Lady Eagles erase a three-run deficit and topple West Monroe 6-5. Live Oak didn’t need any late-game heroics in its next outing against Benton, cruising past the Lady Tigers 8-4 to wrap up tournament play Saturday.

Both Barbe and Live Oak scored a run in the 1st inning of their Friday clash, but the Lady Eagles didn’t score again until the 7th inning. By that time, the Lady Buccaneers had added seven more runs, including three in a four-hit 3rd inning.

But Live Oak shrugged off the loss in time for West Monroe, which took a 10-5 record into the Friday night matchup.

After giving up 12 hits and six earned runs against Barbe, pitcher Lindsey Rizzo had it working most of the night against the Lady Rebels, holding them without a run for five of the first six innings.

West Monroe scored twice in the 2nd inning to grab an early lead, but Kendall Theriot and Rizzo each scored for Live Oak in the 3rd and 4th to tie the game.

Both sides went scoreless in the 5th and 6th innings, putting the International Tiebreaker rule into effect, which automatically places a runner on second base when a tournament game is tied entering the 7th inning.

The extra base runner for the Lady Rebels scored, along with two others, to put them ahead 5-2 with three outs to go.

But the Lady Eagles surged back, getting three consecutive hits from Theriot, Kelsey Miller and Giselle Ash before Jones’ double to left field drove in the winning runs.

Live Oak breathed much easier on the final day of the tournament against Benton. The Lady Eagles jumped ahead 7-0 after the 3rd inning before adding another run in the 6th, which was more than enough to withstand a four-run 5th inning by the Lady Tigers.

Miller and Theriot each racked up two hits for Live Oak, which finished with at least 10 hits (11) for the 12th time this season.

The Lady Eagles return to action against Zachary at 5 p.m. Tuesday at Live Oak Ball Park. The Lady Broncos and Live Oak split their season series last year and finished as co-champions of District 4-5A with identical 6-2 records.

Barbe 8, Live Oak 3

Live Oak 100 000 2 -- 3 7 3

Barbe 103 220 X -- 8 12 1

Live Oak 6, West Monroe 5

West Monroe 020 000 3 -- 5 9 1

Live Oak 001 100 4 -- 7 9 1

Live Oak 8, Benton 4

Benton 000 040 0 -- 4 9 2

Live Oak 232 001 X -- 8 11 0

Walker snaps losing skid

The Walker softball team got something in the Brusly Tournament it failed to get in the previous six games: a win.

Following big losses to Opelousas Catholic and North Vermilion by a combined 23 runs, the Lady Cats used their biggest offensive explosion of the season to cap off the weekend tournament with a 14-12 triumph over Iota on Saturday afternoon.

The win snapped Walker’s six-game losing streak that had only one loss by less than 10 runs, with the remaining five ending in five innings or less. The Lady Cats never trailed against Iota, leading 8-3 after the first 3 innings before tacking on six more over the 5th and 6th innings.

The Lady Bulldogs made it a game with five runs in the 5th and four in the 6th, but the Lady Cats’ early dominance ultimately proved greater than Iota’s late rally.

Walker’s Madison Monson hit for the cycle and drove in four runs while going 5-for-5 at the plate, but she got plenty of support from her teammates. Madison D’Amico, Alyssa Hohense and Alayna Adams each collected three hits and combined for eight RBIs while the Lady Cats as a team batted 18-for-40.

Kaylee Hibbard picked up the win for Walker despite allowing 10 runs, though only two were earned. She struck out four batters but walked six before getting pulled after the 5th with her team ahead by two. Gracie Jones was credited with the save after she retired three of the four batters she faced in the 7th.

The win against Iota couldn’t have come at a better time for Walker, which opened the Brusly Tournament with a 24-11 loss to Opelousas Catholic on Friday and a 12-2 loss to North Vermilion on Saturday, both ending in five innings.

Walker has a busy week ahead, beginning with a home game against East Ascension at 5 p.m. Monday followed by District 4-5A matches at Central (5 p.m. Tuesday) and at home against Live Oak (5 p.m. Thursday).

Opelousas Catholic 24, Walker 11

Opelousas 574 08X X -- 24 13 3

Walker 301 34X X -- 11 10 4

North Vermilion 12, Walker 2

Walker 002 00X X -- 2 6 1

North Vermilion 0010 2XX X -- 12 11 4

Walker 14, Iota 12

Walker 161 024 0 -- 14 18 3

Iota 003 054 0 -- 12 14 4

Denham Springs wins two in Sulphur Tournament

For the third consecutive weekend, the Denham Springs High softball team won two of three games in tournament play, squeezing a loss to Evangel Christian between victories over Westlake and Pineville in the Sulphur Tournament this weekend.

The Lady Jackets erupted for seven runs in the 1st inning before pulling away from Westlake in the 6th to secure a 15-4 win Friday night. It was the second win by at least 10 runs for Denham this season, following a 16-1 rout of Walker on Tuesday.

Natalie Parker (2-for-3, 2 RBIs) and Bailey Hughes (2-for-4, 2 RBIs) paced the Lady Jackets at the plate while pitcher Allison Irby took care of business in the circle to collect her seventh win of the season.

But things fell apart the next morning as Denham was blown out by Evangel Christian 11-1 in six innings.

Starting once again with Irby, the Lady Jackets threw their entire pitching staff against the Lady Eagles but wound up suffering their most lopsided defeat of the season, matching a 10-0 loss to Parkview Baptist earlier this year.

But the crushing defeat Saturday morning was quickly forgotten after Denham rallied from a four-run deficit to to come away with a thrilling 7-5 win over Pineville on Saturday afternoon.

The Lady Jackets steadily worked their way back in it after starter Melody Lienemann gave up four runs in the top of the 1st, driving in a run in each of the first 5 innings to head into the 6th tied 5-5. Neither team scored in the 6th, which meant each subsequent inning began with a runner on second base, per the International tiebreaker rule for tournament play.

Denham was able to take advantage of the additional base runner while Pineville could not, completing the Lady Jackets’ come-from-behind victory.

Layne Miley gave up one unearned run after replacing Lienemann with two outs in the 2nd to grab the first victory of her career.

The Lady Jackets will pick things back up with three games during the week before playing in another tournament next weekend. Home games against Holden (5 p.m. Monday) and Acadiana (4 p.m. Wednesday) precede a District 4-5A match at Central at 5 p.m. Thursday. After that, Denham will take part in the North/South Tournament in Zachary, where they’ll square off against Ruston, Ouachita Christian and West Monroe.

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