Trey Hawsey was sitting on a fastball the whole time.
Down 5-3 with two runners on in the seventh inning, West Monroe’s sophomore slugger took a curveball and didn’t budge. He knew eventually he would get his chance, and when that fastball came, Hawsey sent it high in the sky. As Hawsey rounded first and watched it go over the fence, he pounded his fist in the air while his teammates raced to meet him at home plate.
It was celebration time, as that three-run shot gave the No. 2 Rebels a 6-5 walk-off victory against No. 3 Dutchtown in the Class 5A semifinals.
“I was just thinking about putting the ball in the gap and it happened to go over,” Hawsey said. “It’s the best feeling in the world. We’re doing this for all of our seniors. Every single one of them. We want to win it all. Let’s go! We’re not done.”
West Monroe head coach Wade Simoneaux predicted Hawsey would go the opposite way with a curveball but was thrilled to see Hawsey drill the fastball over the centerfield wall. The homer capped six unanswered runs, as the Rebels trailed 5-0 heading into the sixth inning.
“Our hitters, we know we can hit,” Simoneaux said. “We got their guy's pitch count up and got them in their bullpen and delivered some blows when we needed them.”
A wild pitch and Parker Sellers sacrifice fly made it a 5-2 ballgame in the sixth inning before Lytton Arledge’s RBI single drew the Rebels within two runs in the final inning. With the top of the order coming up to bat in the seventh, West Monroe third baseman Hayden Federico believed the stage was set for a comeback.
“When it got to a two-run lead, I told Trey while we were standing on the pitching mound, ‘You or me are going to win this game.’ I told him me and John (Pearson) were going to get on base for him, and it happened like a movie.”
Trent Anderson walked to leadoff the inning and Pearson hit into a fielder’s choice before Federico singled. That led to the bone-chilling walk-off homer.
While the big hits were certainly headline-worthy, Simoneaux tossed the game ball to Drew Ferguson after the game. Ferguson, who relieved Brennan Eager in the second inning with his team facing a four-run deficit, allowed just one earned run on three hits and no walks in 5.1 innings pitched.
Federico and Hawsey each collected two hits in the win for the Rebels.
West Monroe will play No. 8 St. Amant for the Class 5A State Championship at 6 p.m. in Sulphur Saturday.