The Haughton Bucs, Parkway Panthers, Airline Vikings and Benton Tigers opened the high school baseball season with victories Monday.
Haughton edged Alexandria Senior High 2-1 at Haughton, Parkway blanked Ouachita Christian 6-0 in Monroe, Airline slipped past North DeSoto 4-3 at Airline and defending Class 4A state champion Benton defeated Bossier 21-0 in a District 1-4A game at Benton.
At Haughton, the game turned into a pitchers’ duel.
Haughton sophomore Chase Keith allowed just one hit in 6 1/3 innings, a double with one out in the seventh. After the Trojans cut the Bucs’ lead to 2-1 on an error, Dawson Hunt struck out the final two batters to get the save.
ASH’s Cy Fontenot allowed only one hit and struck out eight.
Peyton Stovall had a single for Haughton. Landon Thompson and Caleb Green had one RBI each.
Stovall’s hit came with one out in the bottom of the fourth. He stole second, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on Green’s sacrifice bunt to the pitcher.
Thompson reached base with two outs on a dropped third strike. That scored Jonathan Sewell, who reached on an error, advanced to second on Green’s bunt and third on a sacrifice bunt by CJ McWilliams.
At Ouachita Christian, Parkway starter Parker Stevens gave up just one hit in 5 1/3 innings and struck out five.
Caleb Reese went 2-for-3 with two RBI. Amani Larry and Collier Cloinger had two hits each.
At Airline, Bryson Connell and Will Tynes combined on a two-hitter in the Vikings’ victory. Connell struck out nine and walked only one in four innings. Tynes, who got the win, struck out five and walked one.
“We are definitely excited,” Airline coach Toby Todd said. “A lot of hard work and preparation all culminates with the most exciting day of the year, opening day. It wasn’t our best, but credit to both teams on a cold night for competing very hard in a tough contest. In the end, we did some little things that proved to be difference in the ball game.”
Dalton Burrell has two hits and two RBI.
The Vikings rallied from a 3-2 deficit with two runs in the bottom of the fifth. Burrell and Tynes had back-to-back RBI singles with one out.
“Tonight was a rough night to hit, but we did just enough,” Tynes said. “On the mound I tried to challenge their hitters and trust my stuff and was happy with the outcome. Any time you can contribute to helping your team win a game, it’s a good feeling, especially on opening day.”
Airline will host a three game series this week beginning Thursday with Neville, a 9-3 winner over Byrd in its opener. First pitch is slated for 6 p.m., weather permitting.
At Benton, 13 Tigers had hits in the five-inning game. Clint Lasiter had three hits and three RBI. Tanner Timms also had three hits. Jackson Illingworth had two.
Lasiter, Landon Joyner, Cade Scott, Brock Van Hoy and Grayson Gates combined on a no-hitter with 12 strikeouts.
NOTE: This report is based on information found on teams’ official GameChanger sites or received from coaches. Airline assistant coach Al Cantwell contributed to the Airline segment with quotes and game details.