Central Catholic High School's Drake Angeron makes a throw to first base during regular season action against Hanson Memorial. Central Catholic will begin Division IV postseason play Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. at home against False River Academy. (The Daily Review/Geoff Stoute)
CCHS will host False River Academy Wednesday
Central Catholic will begin its attempt at a repeat state title when it opens Division IV playoff action Wednesday at home in a 5:30 p.m. contest against False River Academy.
Central Catholic, which won the Class 1A title a year ago, will be competing for the inaugural Division IV state title after schools competing in baseball were split into select and nonselect divisions, beginning this season.
The Eagles enter the postseason as the District 7-1A champs after finishing league play with a 14-0 mark. Overall, Central Catholic is 24-7 and has won 11 straight and 23 of its last 26 games. The Eagles’ last loss was a 2-1 defeat to Class 5A Acadiana High School on March 29.
The solid finish comes after the Eagles limped to a 1-4 record to start the season.
“I think early we were trying to find our identity,” Central Catholic Coach Tyler Jensen said. “I mean losing some of the guys we lost, some of the spots we lost really created some holes for us.”
Jensen said he thought some of his player may have been trying to mimic the departed seniors’ play instead of simply playing to the best of their abilities.
“I think we maybe we got caught in the repeat type stuff, and we started to press,” he said.
Jensen said getting over that rough spot at the beginning of the season had more to do with the Eagles than the competition.
“You could start to see us slowly get better and better and better,” he said.
After enduring what Jensen said was the toughest schedule he has played in his six years leading the program, he said the team is playing well right now, noting the team can score many runs, if necessary, or grind out close ball games.
False River Academy enters Wednesday’s game with a 10-18-1 overall mark, including a 2-7 record in District 5-1A, good enough for a third-place finish. The Gators will be looking to snap a nine-game losing streak Wednesday. The Gators’ last win was a 3-2 win against Port Barre April 3.
Jensen said the Gators have some players who can hit, and a pitcher to look out for is junior Cole Laprarie.
“They’re scrappy, scrappy, scrappy,” Jensen said. “They find different ways to score runs.”
He said coaches he has talked to have told him the Gators are well coached and play hard, too. The Gators are coached by Joel Daigle, a Central Catholic alum who played with Jensen in high school and served as an assistant coach for Jensen.
“As far as facing him, he and I are pretty good friends,” Jensen said. “He’s a really good coach. He’s a really good guy. I know he’s getting as much as he can out of his guys.”
Daigle’s nephew, Hunter Daigle, is a member of the Central Catholic baseball team, while Joel Daigle's brother, Tim Daigle, also an ex-Central Catholic baseball player, is a False River assistant coach.