Louisa’s Major baseball team wrapped up its run at the District 14 title in style, defeating Culpeper 12-1 on Luck Field in Mineral on July 2. The win earns the team a spot in the Virginia Little League state tournament next week.
Louisa got the ball rolling early, with lead-off batter Noah Cudd connecting with his first pitch for a single. After stealing second, Cudd scored on a RBI double from Cole Loudin. Loudin was then batted in by Ian Taylor.
Cody Fifer scored the team’s third run, crossing the plate on a sacrifice single by Matthew Walker. Taylor rounded out the scoring for the inning, reaching home on a single from Cayson Hollins. As the first inning ended, Louisa led 4-0.
After holding Culpeper scoreless for another at-bat, the Louisa all-stars stepped up to the plate again. Ethan McGehee got the action started with a single, then reached second on a single from Cudd. The pair moved up one base on an error, then were batted in by Loudin, who notched his second RBI double of the game, boosting Louisa to a 6-0 lead.
Fifer hit a double to score Loudin and reached third on an error. Fifer made it home on a sacrifice from Taylor to close out the inning’s scoring and give Louisa an 8-0 lead.
Hopes of a shutout were ended in the top of the third as Culpeper scored their lone run of the game. Louisa took it in stride and scored four more runs in the bottom of the inning.
Levi Bowman got on base first, followed by a walk from Cudd and a single from Troy Cornett, loading the bases. Loudin tallied his third RBI of the game, a single this time, plating Bowman. A sacrifice from Fifer got Cudd home, and Taylor hit a double to score Cornett and Loudin, boosting Louisa to a 12-1 lead. Three outs later, the Louisa all-stars were declared winners by mercy rule.
“I’ve been preaching to [the boys] to come out and jump on that first-pitch fastball and that’s exactly what they’ve been doing,” Team Manager Maurice Holland said. “That’s how we’ve been getting our runs in.”
With the district title under their belts, the team now looks to the Virginia Little League state tournament in Abingdon, which begins on July 19.
“We’re very capable of going far as long as we play as a team,” Holland said. “If we keep hitting the ball like we have been, our pitchers keep throwing strikes like they have been, if we keep hitting the ball and playing good defense like we have been, there’s no reason we can’t go far in this [tournament].”
The Major team is the fourth Louisa all-star baseball team to win the district title this season and advance to the state tournament. The 8-10-year-old and 9-11-year-old teams begin their state tournament play on July 12 in Norfolk and Bluefield, respectively, and the Senior league team began their state tournament in Lower Loudon on July 6.