Zack Smith. RECORD PHOTO: Mark Dunn.

It finally happened for the returning members of the Bridge City baseball team, the long awaited rematch with Waco Robinson that had been brewing for a year. The Robinson Rockets had knocked the Cardinals out of the playoffs a year ago in the exact same round and BC had this date on their calendar circled in red ink for some time. A classic match up between the states top two teams that everyone in the region had been waiting to see. The game gained even more pressure as Robinson won the coin toss and opted for a one game winner take all scenario where two dominant pitchers, Jacob Lemoine for BC and Chad Hollingsworth from Waco Robinson, would square off with the hopes of their teams resting squarely on each of their shoulders.

Robinson got on the board first with three consecutive two out singles that plated one run. The Cardinals answered in their half of the third inning with two runs as Jacob Lemoine doubled to right and was eventually brought home on a single from Cameron Dishon.

Dishon would then score when Mitchell Hubbard reached on an error by the Robinson shortstop which put BC up 2-1. The momentum in the game was gradually shifting the Cardinals way as they sat Robinson down with no runs in the third and fourth innings. The Cardinals were in business in the top of the fifth as Hunter Uzzle singled to right and was followed by Dishon who walked to set up BC’s best scoring threat of the game. After Hubbard flied out Bryce Sampere laced a Hollingsworth pitch up the middle only to snared in mid air on a spectacular play by the Robinson shortstop. The momentum of the game took a drastic change from that point forward.

Bryce Sampere. RECORD PHOTO: Mark Dunn.

In the bottom half of the fifth Robinson got a lead off walk followed by a strikeout and another walk to put runners at first and second with one out. It was now Hollingsworth’s turn to hit and Lemoine jumped out with two strikes early in the count. After spoiling a third strike and another pitch that was good enough to be called strike three was ruled a ball by the home plate umpire Hollingsworth singled to right field and tied the game. Another Robinson single loaded the bases with one out. At this point Coach Chad Landry made a pitching change and put Hayden Guidry right into the fire so to speak as he entered the game with bases loaded. Guidry got a ground ball to the left side that was misplayed and allowed three runs to score and put Robinson squarely in the drivers seat. By the time the inning was over Waco had scored five runs and taken a 6-2 lead with two innings to play. The Cardinals were unable to generate any offense in the sixth or seventh and only had one runner reach base as Uzzle drew a two out walk in the seventh and was left stranded as the Cardinals ended their season with the third out.

Jake Lemoine. RECORD PHOTO: Mark Dunn

The loss to Robinson marked the fourth consecutive playoff exit for BC in the Region Semi finals which is quite an accomplishment by any stretch of the imagination. This years team ended their season at 25-3-1 with only one loss to a 3A team. The success of this years group of Seniors is the stuff one could only dream about. The win totals, playoff appearances, school records, and district titles only say a few things about this great group of athletes. For four years they have given their best to the program and to Bridge City High School. It has certainly been a privilege to watch these young men and to be able to see them play as hard as they did for as long they did. They have certainly set the bar high for following classes and they left their mark for years to come. Congratulations to all the members of the Bridge City Baseball team on a very successful season.