Story and photos by Derek Dunbar, Junior at St. Augustine High School
On a wet evening at Maestri Field, the UNO Privateers took on the Southeastern Louisiana Lions. Coming off a tough loss to the Jackson State University Tigers, the Privateers looked to get their team strength back on the night. The Privateers are 15-14 overall and 3-9 in conference play. The Lions are 14-15 overall and 6-3 in conference play.
The Privateers got the bats rolling first in the bottom of the second inning with Gaige Howard (43) hitting a base hit to left field. Following Howard, Tresten Kennard hit a double off the left center wall moving Howard up. Beau Bratton hit one back up to the middle, Howard was nearly picked off by the pitcher, being forced into a run down and being tagged out. The pitcher Corey Gaconi (25) retired the next two batters.
The Lions finally broke the curse in the top of the third inning with a homerun by Preston Faulkner (22), making the score 1-0. Brandon Mitchell (33) then retired the next two batters.
Corey Gaconi (25) then faced three Privateers batters in the bottom of the third with the help of his defense, retiring all three.
In the top of the fourth the Lion’s left fielder Nick Ray (32) hit a triple to left center, he is then brought in by the right fielder Nathan Pilutti (4) making the score 2-0. Connor Manola (5) was walked and received a courtesy runner Trey Shaffer (15). Steckler was then hit by a pitch, loading the bases. Mitchell (33) then found his way out of the inning.
The Privateers tried to find some momentum but in the sixth inning the Lions did not look back, getting a quality at bat by Nick Ray (32), earning a walk. The catcher for the lions Connor Manola hit a base hit, and a wild pitch by Mitchell caused both runners to move up.
The Lions force the Privateers to a pitching change in the sixth inning, bringing in Matthew Oset.
A sac fly by Steckler brings in Nick Ray (32). The short stop (6) finally gets a hit, going back up the middle, scoring both Shaffer courtesy runner and Pilutti, making the score 5-0. Cody Grosse steals second on a wild pitch and on an attempt pick off he scores on an error by the pitcher, making the score 6-0. Schimpf the first baseman crushes one to center field making the score 7-0. Matthew Oset gets out of the inning.
The Privateers fought for their first run by earning a stand up double by Luther Woullard (4). Following the double Gaige Howard gets a RBI single, making the score 7-1.
The Privateers will fall to 15-15 overall and 3-10 in conference play. The Lions will move to 15-15 and 7-3 in conference play. The Privateers will face the Lions tomorrow April 6, 2019 at 2p.m and at 5:45 p.m to close out the Pontchartrain Bowl.