Barbe is No. 1 seed in LHSAA Class 5A baseball playoffs

There were a few late changes, but Denham Springs High baseball coach Mark Carroll said most coaches got pretty much what they expected when the Louisiana High School Athletic Association released its Class 5A baseball pairings Sunday.

“There were some games that weren’t reported until yesterday, and several teams played yesterday,” Carroll said. “When you factor in the forfeits that came out on Friday, there was a lot to figure out.

“I think the fact that Zachary slipped the way they did was one thing that was a little surprising. We almost got a matchup with Central. Having the number of teams on the bracket that we have speaks well for Baton Rouge.”

Barbe (32-2), ranked No. 1 nationally, grabbed the No. 1 5A seed as expected. The Bucs of Lake Charles have won 20 straight. Brother Martin (27-4) of New Orleans took the No. 2 spot. Denham Springs (25-9), the District 4-5A champion, was seeded fourth to lead the Baton Rouge contingent.

Teams have until Tuesday to complete bidistrict games. On Friday, the winners begin first-of-three game series for the regional round and later in the quarterfinal rounds. It is the first time the LHSAA has had best-of-three series, which will take place only in 5A.

DSHS is set to host No. 29 Airline (18-16) at 5 p.m. Tuesday at North Park. Fifth-seeded St. Amant (24-8), which shared the District 5-5A title with Catholic High and Dutchtown, will host Fontainebleau at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

St. Amant was one team that moved up slightly, going from No. 6 to No. 5 in the final LHSAA power rankings.

“Several teams we’d played were in that group that played Saturday, and I think we picked up some points there and that’s why we moved up to fifth,” St. Amant coach Troy Templet said.

Two other teams, defending 5A state champion Catholic (23-10) and Live Oak (25-8), garnered spots in the LHSAA’s top 10. Catholic was seeded ninth and will play No. 24 Covington. Live Oak, seeded 10th, garnered the highest 5A playoff seed in the school’s history and will host No. 23 Sam Houston (17-14) at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

Interestingly, the LOHS softball team beat Sam Houston to 10-9 on Friday to advance to the LHSAA’s State Softball Tournament. The Sam Houston baseball team was a semifinalist a year ago.

In addition to results of Saturday games, eight forfeits by 5A Mandeville and 18 by 3A Livonia, affected the final standings.

Dutchtown (22-11) was seeded 13th and hosts Lafayette (17-15) at 6 p.m. Tuesday. Zachary (21-11), a 4-5A team that was rated in the top 10 for much of the year, including eighth in the LHSAA rankings on April 22, had the sharpest drop. The 15th-seeded Broncos, who were the 5A runner-up last spring, host West Monroe at 6 p.m. Tuesday game.

The remaining three BR area teams, No. 25 Walker (18-15), No. 26 East Ascension (17-16) and No. 30 Central (17-16) all play on the road.

Walker travels to No. 8 Ruston (22-11) at 6 p.m. Tuesday, while EAHS plays No. 7 Comeaux (22-11) at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette; Central plays at No. 3 Jesuit (27-4) at 7 p.m. Tuesday at John Ryan Stadium.