Hanson Memorial Lady Tigers flatten Ecole Classique in state playoff opener

The highly-touted Hanson Memorial Lady Tigers’ bats came alive in the second inning, supporting the superb pitching of Evelyn Pontiff and Emily Champagne as HMS blew out the Ecole Classique Lady Spartans 10-0 in five innings in the State Class 1-A bidistrict playoff contest Monday at the HMS Softball Field.

The No. 2 seeded Hanson Lady Tigers erupted for seven of their 10 runs in the bottom half of the second innings when their bats heated up behind a run-producing double from Kimberly Sonnier. A mixed up batting order came to life early in the second frame displaying its customary power while sending the HMS Lady Tigers to an opening round triumph.

Hanson broke open a scoreless game with seven runs in the second frame, securing an insurmountable 7-0 advantage. Keying the Lady Tigers’ seven-run eruption was a two-run double by leading hitter.

Hanson Coach Theresa Lombardo was excited about the opening round victory.

“I am definitely excited about the opening round win but now its time to start thinking about the next game which will be against the winner of the Quachita Christian-Montgomery winner,” she said.

Lombardo praised her squad for being ready after Monday’s hard shower which forced her to spend time getting the field ready.

“We were fortunate to get the game in as I spent warmup time getting the field ready,” Lombardo said. “They were ready to play and I’m glad for that. I wasn’t involved in early game warm-ups, but they came out ready and they did great.”

While waiting an inning for their bats to heat up, Hanson’s Evelyn Pontiff and Emily Champagne handcuffed the Lady Spartans batters, combining on another pitching gem. Pontiff and Champagne were as dominant on the mound as usual, not allowing a single hit.

Pontiff worked three hitless innings, striking out four while walking only one moving to an incredible 11-1 mark on the season. Champagne appeared in the final two frames, slamming the door shut on Ecole Classique, striking out one and walking two.

Hanson manufactured seven runs in the bottom half of the second inning while adding one insurance run in each of the third, fourth and fifth frames for the 10-0 victory in the opening round of the State Class 1-A playoffs.

Leading hitters for the Hanson Lady Tigers were: Kim Sonnier, 4 for 4, triple, double, 2 RBI, run; Evelyn Pontiff, 2 for 4, 2 runs; Katie Sonnier, 2 for 2, RBI, run; Emily Sonnier, 1 for 3, double, 2 RBI; Lexi Coleman, 1 for 2, run; Macie Guillotte, 1 for 4, run and Paige Diamond, 1 for 1, double, run.

The No. 2 seeded Hanson Lady Tigers will battle the survivor of the Quachita Christian-Montgomery game later this week in the State Class 1-A regionals.

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