METAIRIE (WGNO) — Bryce Pitts struck out Byrd’s Kevin Robinson three times throughout a 7-strikeout and excellent defensive play behind him in the Blue Jays’ 3-1 Game 1 quarterfinal win on Friday night at John Ryan Stadium.

Jesuit’s Hunter Oufnac shined at the plate, hitting 2-for-3 with a single in the third inning that allowed Everett Denny to score on an error, making it 2-0, and a RBI triple to score Denny in the fifth for a 3-1 lead and the eventual final run.

Among a plethora of great fielding plays by both teams, Pitts said there was none more crucial than Blue Jay shortstop Jake Morici’s catch to end the top of the fifth. Down 2-1 at that point, the Yellow Jackets had runners on second and third when Byrd cleanup hitter Brooks Brossette hit a line drive that Morici had no business catching.

Mentality-wise I was letting the defense play today. I usually like to strikeout everybody, but sometimes you can’t. You got to let the defense play which they did today. The line drive to Jake Morrissey right there with runners on second and third. That could have changed the whole game. Him catching that was a game changer.”

Kenny Goodlett, Jesuit Head Coach: “Defensively. Like I said before, he just trust his defense and make pitches and that’s all we asked him to do. Fill up the zone. Let us play defense behind you and he’s been doing a great job, not just tonight, but all season long with that.”

The Blue Jays and Yellow Jackets will play Game 2 on Staurday at noon and the if-necessary Game 3 will follow at John Ryan Stadium.