High school baseball: Haughton turns tables on Airline; Benton, Parkway win

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One day after losing to Airline 3-1, the Haughton Buccaneers returned the favor, defeating the Vikings by the same score Tuesday at Airline.

Haughton improved to 19-9 overall and completed District 1-5A play 5-7. The Bucs are scheduled to close the regular season with a noon doubleheader against Summerfield Friday.

Airline dropped to 18-14 and finished 6-6 in district. The Vikings are scheduled to host West Monroe on Friday at 6 p.m. in their regular-season finale.

The Bucs and Vikings will both be going to the playoffs and could host first-round games. According to louisianasportsline.com, Haughton was No. 12 in the Class 5A power rankings and Airline No. 15. The top 16 teams in the final rankings host first-round games.

In a District 1-4A game Tuesday, the Benton Tigers defeated the Bossier Bearkats 17-2 at Rusheon.

Benton (26-5, 10-0) is scheduled close district play and the regular season with a two-game set against Northwood (17-10, 9-1) on Wednesday at Northwood and Thursday at Benton. Both games are scheduled to start at 6.

Benton, No. 4 in the Class 4A power rankings, can clinch its seventh straight district title with a victory Wednesday. If Northwood wins, it will come down to one game for the championship.

Bossier (12-13, 3-7) is scheduled to close the regular season with games against Woodlawn Wednesday at Woodlawn and Thursday at Rusheon.

According to louisianasportsline.com, Bossier is No. 29 in the Class 4A power rankings. The top 32 teams in the final rankings generally make the playoffs.

In a non-district game, District 1-5A champion Parkway ended Calvary Baptist’s 13-game winning streak with a 5-4 victory at Parkway.

Parkway (24-5) is scheduled to close the regular season with home games Wednesday at 5 against Summerfield and Thursday at 6 against North Webster.

The Panthers are No. 3 in the Class 5A power rankings.

At Airline, Haughton’s Caleb Green went 2-for-4 with a double and two RBI.

As in Monday’s Game 1, both teams got outstanding pitching performances.

Haughton starter Chase Keith allowed three hits, walked one and struck out five in 5 2/3 innings.  CJ McWilliams got the save. He didn’t allow a hit, walked two and struck out two in 1 2/3 innings.

Airline’s Bryson Connell pitched a complete game. He gave up five hits, walked three and struck out six.

Haughton took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first. After being hit by a pitch, McWilliams stole second and advanced to third on Logan Wilkerson’s groundout. He scored on a Green single to left.

Connell limited the damage by getting a flyout and strikeout.

McWilliams also scored Haughton’s second run in the fifth. He led off with a walk then scored on Green’s two-out single to left.

Airline got on the board in the sixth. Connell and Hayden Travinski had back-to-back singles with one out. Connell advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on Dalton Burrell’s sacrifice fly.

McWilliams again came up big in the top of the seventh, smacking a solo home run over the left field fence to make it 3-1.

McWilliams struck out the first two batters in the bottom of the inning before the Vikings made things interesting.

Cole Broadway and Hunter Whiteside drew back-to-back walks. Both advanced on defensive indifference. But Broadway was thrown out trying to steal home with catcher Dustin Barron throwing to McWilliams for the tag.

Both teams failed to capitalize on scoring opportunities. Barron led off the fourth with a double but the Bucs couldn’t get him home. Broadway doubled with one out in the fifth and reached third on an error. But McWilliams ended the threat with a strikeout.

Airline left runners at third in two other innings. Haughton left two on in the first two innings.

At Rusheon, Bossier trailed Benton just 3-0 after three, but the Tigers pulled away with two runs in each of the next three innings then put eight on the board in the top of the seventh.

Nine Benton players combined for 16 hits. Brennan Blaylock went 3-for-3 with a home run, two doubles and four RBI. Cade Scott went 3-for-5 with a home run, double and three RBI.

JT Brice and Sam Simmons had two doubles each. Matthew Gennaro and Jack Walters each had a double.

Austin Berry, Hayden Gatti, Gennaro and Brock Van Hoy had two RBI apiece.

Cade Paddy, Grayson Mims, Grayson Gates and Gennaro combined on a three-hitter with 10 strikeouts.

Chase Bounds, Peyton Allen and Jamaal Brooks had Bossier’s hits.

At Parkway, Peyton Lewis had two of the Panthers’ six hits, including a double. Christion Rayner and Caleb Reese had one double each.

Starter Hayden Knotts allowed six hits and two earned runs in 6 1/3 innings. He struck out three and walked one. Eric Brown got the final two outs.

The game was tied at 3 after three innings. Parkway took the lead for good in the bottom of the fourth.

Rayner led off with his double and Knotts reached on an error. Rayner advanced to third on Christian Vicknair’s sacrifice bunt. Amani Larry was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Collier Cloinger then had a good at-bat, drawing a walk after fouling off three pitches to score Rayner.

The Panthers made it 5-3 with a run with two outs in the bottom of the sixth. Larry walked, stole second and third then scored on a wild pitch.

Carson Barnette cut Parkway’s lead to one with a home run over the left-field wall with one out. Brown relieved Knotts and walked the first batter he faced. But he struck out the next one and got a groundout to short to end the game.