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STA routs Roos for second straight win

THROWING HEAT- STA Freshman pitcher Layton Pittman throws seven strikeouts in a 12-2 win over Kentwood.

Photo by Matthew Roy

Despite having to rally out of a 6-0 deficit the previous night to beat Ponchatoula 11-6, the St. Thomas Aquinas Falcons looked well rested as they capitalized on an early outburst to defeat Kentwood 12-2 in six innings.

"We had a very emotional and late win last night," STA Coach Barrett Morgan said. "I told the guys that if you were a betting man you'd probably take the rouse today because it's a trap game."

Morgan said there were some mental errors at the beginning for the Falcons, but at a point early on his team had six consecutive hits and found their identity again.

The Falcons never looked back after taking a 3-1 lead at the bottom of the first inning thanks to Sam Smith and Casey Artigues ripping off early hits that led to runs. Senior Ryan Dawsey made a sacrifice hit to bring a runner home and Smith hit a home run that brought runners home at the top of a second rotation to extend the lead to 8-1.

Things got worse for the Kangaroos in the top of the second inning when freshman pitcher Layton Pittman struck out three consecutive batters at the plate with no hits and no errors. Pittman had a total of seven strikeouts for the night.

"That was Pittman's first start. I wanted to see him come and throw strikes and he did a good job at that," Morgan said.

Though STA was sharp, the Roos committed several errors that contributed to their early deficit. Though the score does not indicate it, Coach Taylor Abdalla said that the game could have been closer.

"I don't think anything happened to us except we put our head down in the bottom of the first," Abdalla said. "Take away that one big inning and it's a 2-1 ball game headed into the sixth inning. We're watching too many fastballs right down the middle."

The Roos showed some flash to open the game as seniors T.J. Hookfin and Trey Palmer had no issues getting hits and getting on base. A balk put Hookfin on third base which set him up to score a run following Palmer's hit that gave the Roos an initial 1-0 lead.

The Roos never scored again until the sixth inning where they started putting together a string of hits. Palmer put himself in position to score by getting on first and stealing second. He was brought home by an RBI by senior Anthony Holden's hit down the middle of the field.

However, the Roos' last-ditch efforts were short-lived after runners were tagged out on bases and junior Tyler Domiano's double RBI resulted in ending the game with a final score of 12-2.

STA had a total of two home runs in the meeting with Kentwood. Sweeny's came in the bottom fifth inning.

"Right now we're No. 1 in Div. III Select and this is a big week," Morgan said. "We have Byrd coming in for a three-game series that we're trying to treat like a playoff series."

STA will face 5A C.E. Byrd, of Shreveport, Friday at 6 p.m. at Austin Brooks Stadium.