The weather was pretty brutal for the scrimmages last week. One was eleven innings between the Bridge City Cardinals and Nederland Bulldogs. Another went ten innings with the Orangefield Bobcats and Ozen Panthers.  I also went to Port Arthur and watched the WO-S and Memorial scrimmage for three innings, and on Saturday I saw a little bit of the Bridge City – Barbers Hill scrimmage. Coach Landry, Coach Bennett, and Coach Riojas all saw some positive things from their teams. I was impressed with the pitching from all teams, being this early in the year and being cold.

The Cardinals worked seven pitchers in the Nederland scrimmage. Mitchel Hubbard threw 32 pitches in the first two innings. He had three strikeouts and one walk, while giving up one hit and no runs.

Have you seen big Jake Lemoine lately? I don’t know quite how big he is, but I would guess about 6’4”, and close to two hundred pounds. Jake pitched 1 2/3 innings, while striking out three, walking one.  He committed one balk, and gave up one hit during his 34 pitches. The next 23 pitches came from Hayden Guidry, who had three strike-outs, one walk, and only gave up one hit. Preston Pitman took the mound for 19 pitches in his one inning of work.  He had one K, and allowed one hit. Forrest Zoch threw two innings in 38 pitches.  He had an impressive five strike outs, and allowed one base on balls, while only allowing one hit. Zach Smith and Colby Carpenter also got in some work on the mound.

In the hitting department, there were three key hits. Forrest Zoch hit a two run homer in the third inning. Matt Menard hit a two run homer in the eleventh inning that took about two seconds to get out of the park. Dylan Mulhollan had a two run double that hit the opposite field fence. The Cardinals belted 13 hits in all. Defensively, Dishon made two nice catches, and Chance Lemoine look pretty smooth at second base. Overall, the Cardinals looked pretty good for a cold first scrimmage. If you wanted to keep score in a scrimmage, and I always do, it’s was 16-13 in favor of the Cardinals.

Mitchel Hubbard, Jacob Lemoine, Hayden Guidry, Forrest Zoch, and Preston Pitman got in some more work on the mound against Barbers Hill. The Cardinals hit the ball pretty well, and at times played some good small ball. I hope Dylan Mulhollan can keep doing what he is doing. In both scrimmages, he hit the ball hard every time. In one inning, Colby Carpenter led off with a double, then was sacrificed to third by Hunter Uzzle on a bunt.  He then scored on Bryce Sampere single. It’s always nice to see well executed small ball. Overall for this early in the year, the pitching and hitting look pretty good.

After the Barbers Hill scrimmage, the alumni game was played. It sure was nice to see a lot of the old players. Coach Jacob Monceaux almost pulled out a comeback for his squad, but fell short as the evens (red) beat the odds (gray), 5-4. A special thanks to Coach Moore for all the hard work he put in to make this a success.

The Bobcats also looked at seven pitchers. I was mighty impressed with the two freshmen pitchers. Both kept the ball down and looked like veterans on the mound. Braxton Smith pitched two innings, threw 29 pitches, and recorded one strike out. The other freshman was Weston Crain, who threw three innings. Crain took only 33 pitches to strike out four. He allowed no hits. Austin Scales struck out the three batters he faced, using 14 pitches to do so. Quinton Evans got in one inning of work. He threw 17 pitches, struck out three, and walked one. Jonathon DeRamus, Blake Judice, and Jakob Brown each put in one inning a piece. The Bobcats came up with eight hits offensively, with four of them coming off the bat of Jake Best. Jonathon DeRamus, Quinton Evans, Braxton Smith and Sterling Deslatte had the other four hits. Ten Bobcats crossed the plate and only four Panthers.

West Orange played a scrimmage against Kirbyville. Coach Riojas said things went pretty well. He saw some good things offensively and on the mound. Jordan Darnall, Jonathan Smith and Justyn Harrison all threw well. Darius Mitchell, Jordan Darnall, Jacoy Finney and Chaz York hit the ball hard. I got to witness good pitching and hitting by the Mustangs in the three innings that I watched against Memorial. Zane Anderson did not pitch, but I watched Jordan Darnall pitch two innings. He threw 37 pitches, walked two, struck out two, and gave up one hit. Jonathan Smith, a freshman, pitched the third inning. A couple of errors extended his time on the mound. Smith pitched 27 pitches, while walking two, but he allowed no hits. Jonathan Smith may be the help the ‘Stangs were looking for on the mound. The three innings that I was there for, the Mustangs belted eight hits, and scored 12 runs. Jordan Darnall had two of the hits, a double, and a single. Jacoy Finney had two singles. Daniel Woodson had a triple, and Darius Mitchell, James Thomas, and Jonathan Hucko each had a single.

Bridge City had a scrimmage scheduled with PNG Tuesday, and will finish their scrimmage schedule Saturday at LCM. Orangefield had Nederland scheduled Tuesday and will travel to Buna for their last scrimmage Saturday. Vidor and West Orange will end their scrimmage schedule Friday at West Orange. The Mustangs will host their alumni game on Saturday.

See this week’s editions of the County Record and Penny Record for this article and photos.