Fireflies’ first baseman Kate LaHaye (left) awaits the next batter to put the ball in play, while Lovebugs’ runner Evelyn Johnson stands at the bag ready to take off to the next base. (Gazette photo by Tracey Jagneaux)
Off and running
On Friday and Saturday, the Dixie Youth Baseball and Ville Platte Girls Softball Association seasons got off to a roaring start with action in both leagues.
Both seasons, which were supposed to get going back in April, have been put on hold because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
But according to Ville Platte/Evangeline Parish Recreational Park Director David LaHaye, despite the delay in the start of both seasons, Friday and Saturdays action showed the kids were ready to get back playing.
“The turn out for the two opening days was amazing,” stated LaHaye. “The weather was unbelievable and the fans really seemed to enjoy themselves even with the guidelines on social distancing. We had some big crowds and we are expecting the crowds to continue to attend the games for the rest of the two seasons.”
In Dixie Youth action on Friday, the 12U Major All-Stars were tuned up for a round robin of practice games between the three teams in that age group. Unfortunately, one of the teams was unable to be a part of that round robin, leaving two teams to play each other in a double-header format.
In those two contests the Aces and the Dots tangled to show what their respective clubs could do this summer.
In game one, both teams were unable to pick up any runs in the first inning. However that changed in the second inning, as the Dots and the Aces were good for two runs apiece.
The Aces took over the lead in the third inning by plating a single run. The Dots did not let the Aces lead rattle them for long, as they scored four runs in the fourth to pick up the 6-3 win.
In game two, the pitching staffs for both clubs were on point. The two teams each picked up a single run in the fourth inning to make it a 1-1 tie. In the end, it was the Aces that found a way to squeeze in the winning runs, scoring two in the fifth inning to seal the 3-1 victory.
Saturday’s Dixie Youth games featured a trio of 8U Coach Pitch games.
In the first game the Falcons and the Bees found themselves tied at the end of one inning of play. The Falcons outscored the Bees 5-4 in the second inning and 4-3 in the final at bat to take a 13-11 win.
In game two, the Giants and Cubs also saw the game tied at four apiece by the end of the first inning. The Giants picked up seven more runs over the next two innings to take an 11-6 lead. In the last at bat, the Cubs brought home three runs, but it was not enough to overcome the Giants’ lead.
Game three was very exiting, as the Dots and the Elks combined for 20 runs in the first two at bats of the game to produce a 10-10 tie. The Dots found some defense in the third inning, limiting the Elks to three runs, while scoring five more of their own to take a 15-13 win.
In girls action on the VPGSA fields, the Lovebugs and the Fireflies tangled in one of the first 6U T-Ball games of the year. The match-up started with the Lovebugs taking a 2-1 advantage after one inning of play.
That at bat proved to be the difference in the game, as both teams added five runs apiece in each of the next two at bats. In the end it was the Lovebugs coming away with a 12-11 win.