Two thumbs up

Tryve Brackin

Got some “two thumbs up” for recent spring sports athletes in the parish:

SJHS BASEBALL…St. John’s SJHS’ Eagles captured the District 6-1A diamond crown, adding to a long list of league championships for the traditional parish diamond power. The Eagles closed out district with an 11-1 mark. Coach Chris Harrell’s club is 18-8 and ranked 93rd in consolidated Max Preps state baseball power ratings. Landon LeBlanc was a standout pitcher in district play for the Eagles.

Ascension Christian and Ascension Catholic follow SJHS closely in the final round of league action.

PLAQUEMINE HIGH TRACK…The Green Devil boy and girl track teams raced to District 6-4A titles recently.

Coach Peter Villia garnered amazing efforts from sprinter Aldrianna Dupree.

The Lady Green Devils captured an amazing seventh-consecutive district crown in the process. 

Dupree ran a swift 12.18 to win the 100-meter dash and added wins in the 400 and 200 meters to notch Most Valuable Track honors at the meet, held at home at PHS.

Jolin Passantino was a standout for PHS in the field, winning the javelin and discus 6-4A titles and notching Top Field honors at the meet.

The PHS boys spread out points across the board, but future LSU Tiger football player Todd Harris showed his solid athletic abilities by scoring second-place points for the Green Devils in three jumping events.

IBERVILLE SOFTBALL...All four of the parish softball teams notched berths in the state playoffs. That was a rare achievement, going back many years, mostly because White Castle and East Iberville only fielded girl diamond teams in the last decade. Both schools emphasized girl track and field quite successfully over the years. WCHS got its program started in recent years, followed by EIHS.

St. John High has been the dominant girls’ softball program for years, claiming three state titles and a several state tournament berths, including one runner up crown. Next in line, over the years, has been Plaquemine High, which leaped into consistent district contention over the last decade or so.

Sadly, all four teams fell in the first round of the state playoffs against top-ranked opponents. But, hey, it was a parish-wide achievement during the regular season.

GOLF…St. John High lost by a single stroke to 5-A East Ascension in a meet held recently at The Island course in Plaquemine to finish second in a four-way meet. SJ Eagle Preston Acosta shot an 83 for the best single effort at the meet.  ACHS topped Plaquemine to close out third in the meet, five strokes behind SJHS.

Landon Troxclair shot a 45 in a two-way meet with 5-A Catholic High at BR City Park recently to finish individual second place in the event. CHS won by 21 strokes.

DON JONES…Joined six others recently inducted into the La. High School Sports Hall of Fame.

Jones coached football at Plaquemine High in two different stints. He led Green Devil gridiron teams twice to undefeated regular campaigns and several district crowns.

Joining Jones in the 2017 inductions was former White Castle High grid mentor B.J. Guzzardo. He was a big winner at Independence High over several seasons, but mentored only one WCHS Bulldog team. In recent years, he has been a key administration leader at the La. High School Athletic Assn. 

Another inductee had strong football connections to local west bank prep sports. Bucky Mistretta had a pair of coaching stints at Ascension CHS in nearby Donaldsonville. 

Tim Detilier successfully mentored grid play at Lutcher High, while Roman Bates Jr. was a legend in Baton Rouge prep football. And Kenny Almond coached many a game against Plaquemine High in basketball. His Woodlawn teams battled for league crowns on the hardwood often. He was one of the top BR upper classification hoop mentors over a couple of decades.