Avery Schexnaydre missed several weeks earlier in Destrehan’s baseball season.
He played like a guy trying to make up for lost time Tuesday afternoon at East St. John.
Making just his second start of the season because of a broken non-pitching hand, he threw five strong innings and had the biggest hit in a six-run second inning that helped Destrehan stay undefeated in District 7-5A play with a 7-4 victory against East St. John.
“I was seeing the ball good today,” Schexnaydre said. “I felt good at the plate.”
So good in fact that East St. John stopped pitching to him. Schexnaydre had a one-out single in the first inning then had a two-run single for the only multi-RBI hit during the second-inning uprising.
When he came up with runners on second and third with one out in the fourth, East St. John coach Wendell Henderson intentionally walked him. Henderson did the same thing in the sixth in a similar situation.
“That was disappointing,” Schexnaydre said. “I wanted to have a chance at that knockout blow.”
Walking Schexnaydre had mixed results for East St. John. It paid off for East St. John the first time in the form of an inning-ending double play. But the second time, T.J. Thomas followed with a sacrifice fly that produced Destrehan’s final run.
Destrehan improved to 16-8 and 7-0 as it began a busy week. It visited East Ascension in a non-district game Wednesday before finishing the district series by hosting East St. John (12-10, 5-2) on Thursday.
“I think we left a lot of opportunities out there,” Destrehan coach Christopher Mire said. “We knew it was going to be a seven-inning slugfest. We compared it to a seven-round boxing match. It wasn’t perfect but we answered the bell.”
The six-run second inning provided all the runs that Schexnaydre (1-1) and reliever Ty Boyne, who allowed one run in two innings for his second save, would need.
“That’s usually not our game,” Mire said. “We usually open a game a little at a time and bleed it out, but the opportunity presented itself and our guys found some open holes. We’ll take it.”
East St. John starter Herman Farlough allowed seven hits during the second inning, all but one were singles and a couple of the hits could have been outs if his teammates had played better defense behind him.
“(Farlough) threw a really good game,” Henderson. “We’ve got to make plays behind him.”
Dustin Weber, Brock Mire and Ahman Morris had consecutive RBI-singles before Schexnaydre hit a two-run single and Thomas followed with an RBI-double.
After that, Farlough pitched three consecutive scoreless innings before allowing Thomas’ sacrifice fly.
Marcus Jackson relieved Farlough to start the seventh and worked out of a bases-loaded, none-out jam.
East St. John took a 2-0 lead in the first when Kevin Breaux singled with two out and Lonnie Ellis III followed with a home run.
“I fell behind (on Ellis),” Schexnaydre said. “After that I just told myself to throw strikes and keep getting ahead in the count.”
East St. John added an unearned run off Schexnaydre in the fourth, but lost an opportunity to do more when it had a runner picked off.
It loaded the bases with two out in the sixth, but couldn’t score. East St. John left eight runners on base for the game.
“A second inning with six runs got us again,” Henderson said. “The same thing happened at Hahnville (in an 8-3 loss last Thursday).
“We had our chances (Tuesday). But we’ll be back. They know what’s at stake. We play hard. That’s what we do.”