Best parish baseball players of the decade

Kyle Riviere
Gonzales Weekly Citizen

Unfortunately, the Coronavirus pandemic cancelled the second half of the high-school baseball season, not allowing the parish’s best players to finish what they started

With no games being played, it prompts us to look to the past and reflect on all of the great parish players that had memorable careers.

By the time the next baseball season begins, it will be a new decade. Here is a look back at some of the best Ascension baseball players of this decade, years 2010-2020.

Dutchtown produced the biggest names during this period.

Jacob Waguespack went 8-0 as a pitcher during his junior campaign. He was All-State as a senior, going 8-2 with a 0.37 ERA.

He helped lead the Griffins to the semifinals in 2010 and the state quarterfinals in 2012.

Waguespack went on to play at Ole Miss. Last year, he made his Major League Baseball debut as he was called up by the Blue Jays. He made 16 appearances and had a 4.38 ERA and 63 strikeouts in 78 innings.

Troy Lewis was his teammate at Dutchtown. Lewis was a two-time district MVP. In his senior season, he hit .373 with 30 RBIs, and on the mound, he had a 1.56 ERA.

Lewis signed with Coastal Carolina. He ended up finishing his collegiate career with Delgado.

Austin Bain was also the District 5-5A MVP as a senior. He hit .374 with 39 RBIs, five home runs and he had a 2.85 ERA. That season, he helped lead Dutchtown to the quarterfinals.

He went on to play four years at LSU. As a senior, he started 59 games, hitting .311 with 21 doubles.

Cole Stapler was the District MVP as a senior in 2013. Stapler threw a perfect game that season.

He was also a part of the 2012 quarterfinal team.

Stapler went on to be an all-conference player at Nicholls, and he was then drafted by the Diamondbacks. He has worked his way up to Double-A since then.

Caleb Ricca was first-team all-district and a part of the 2014 quarterfinal squad.

He went on to become a three-year starter at Northwestern State, where he made all-conference.

Last year, Ricca was drafted by the Mariners.

Austin Millet was a standout player while at East Ascension. The Spartan ace was a first-team all-district selection three times.

Millet went on to play at Southern Miss.

For St. Amant, Madison Nickens was a first-team all-district standout. He went on to be a part of a national championship team at LSU-Eunice.

From there, he became a starter at Maryland. As a junior there, he hit .260 with 28 RBIs.

Blayne Enlow was one of the best pitchers the Gators ever produced. He was a two-time District 5-5A MVP and Ascension Parish Pitcher of the Year.

He helped lead St. Amant to the quarterfinals in 2016.

Enlow went on to be drafted in the third round by the Twins in 2017.

Ascension Catholic has had some great players over the course of the decade. Landon Clifton certainly stands out.

Clifton was a two-time District 6-1A MVP and first-team All-State. He helped lead the Bulldogs to the state semifinals as a senior.

Clifton went on to have a successful stint with LSU-Eunice. He is currently playing for Southeastern.

Ascension Christian’s Nic Montalbano was a three-year starter with the Lions, but what he did during his senior season surely makes him one of the best parish baseball players of the decade.

He put up video-game numbers. Montalbano hit .604 with 46 RBIs and three home runs from the plate. From the mound, he had a 2.64 ERA.

Montalbano helped lead the Lions to the state quarterfinals for only the second time in the program’s history. He was also named the Ascension Parish MVP.

Montalbano signed with Nunez.