Trailing for much of the game, Lafayette rallied for a 5-4 victory over No. 8 Lexington Catholic on Wednesday to win the 43rd District baseball championship for the second straight season.
The Generals used a four-run sixth inning to take their first lead, then gave up the tying run in the bottom half. Lafayette capitalized on three Lexington Catholic errors in the top of the seventh to take the edge for good at Lexington Christian Academy.
Harrison Fields chopped a ball along the left-field line. The third baseman fielded it but threw it in front of the catcher, allowing Luke Taylor to reach home for the go-ahead score. Senior pitcher Morgan Harris got LexCath’s CJ Bush and Tyler Grigalis to fly out before a 6-3 groundout ended things.
“I feel like I do better under pressure,” Harris said. “You have to focus in the whole time.”
It was Lafayette’s first win over top-seeded Lexington Catholic this season. The Generals knocked off No. 5 Tates Creek 4-0 on Monday. They were 1-3 against those teams during the regular season.
“We peaked at the right time,” said senior Jacob Abbott, an Eastern Kentucky signee. “ ... In the middle of the season I don’t think anyone in the district thought we could do anything. We came out and I knew we had the heart to do it and showed ’em what we are made of.”
Lexington Catholic scored three runs in the third inning. Bush got things started with an RBI double before Grigalis drove him in. . The Knights got their third run via a passed ball.
A squeeze bunt by Andy Thompson drove in the tying score for LexCath in the sixth, but the Knights left another runner stranded. Their first error in the seventh put Eddie Satisky on; the next allowed his pinch runner, Taylor, to get to third. The final one moved him home.
“We kicked it around a little bit,” LexCath Coach Taylor Brooks said. “ ... The good thing is we lost at a time we can lose and we’re still moving on.”
Both teams advanced to the 11th Region tournament next week. Lafayette, the host school, will play one of the second-place teams from the 41st, 42nd or 44th District in the first round. The draw is Saturday morning.
Regardless of how that plays out, the Generals feel great about moving on. Harris said for the first time this season, Lafayette feels like it did last year, when it won 32 games and swept the district.
“This junior group is now seniors,” Lafayette Coach Chris Langston said. “They lived it last year and know what it takes.”
Satisky, T. Guilfoil (3), Harris (4) and Adams; Sottile, Lockhart (6) and Grigalis. W—Harris. L—Lockhart. 2B—Abbott (L), Bush (LC). Records: Lafayette 21-15, Lexington Catholic 24-12.
MVP—Jackson Boggs, Lafayette
Team—Jacob Abbott, Lafayette; Morgan Harris, Lafayette; CJ Bush, Lexington Catholic; Landon Moberly, Lexington Catholic; Evan Hall, Tates Creek; Dalton Hill, Paul Laurence Dunbar; Jaxson Blair, Lexington Christian
11th Region Tournament
When: Monday through Wednesday
Where: Lafayette High School
Teams: Franklin County, Henry Clay, Lafayette, Lexington Catholic, Madison Central, Madison Southern, Scott County, Western Hills