The Monroe City baseball team held off Louisiana on Monday night to secure an 8-5 victory in a Clarence Cannon Conference game.

The Monroe City baseball team held off Louisiana on Monday night to secure an 8-5 victory in a Clarence Cannon Conference game.

Monroe City built an 8-0 lead before Louisiana countered for five runs over the final two innings to pose a threat.

But the Panthers didn’t allow the Bulldogs to scratch any closer, ensuring the strong start by hurler Gavin Lehenbauer was not for naught. Lehenbauer pitched four scoreless innings to earn the win.

Monroe City got on the board in the first inning when Lance Williams singled home Dawson Shively to make it 1-0. Lehenbauer and Konnor Bridgewater drew bases-loaded walks in the third to put the Panthers ahead by three.

Josh Crook delivered an RBI single in the fourth before Jarrad Verdier took the Panthers third bases-loaded walk of the day to grow their lead to 5-0.

Crook and Josh Underhill kept the damage coming in the fifth. Crook singled to left field to bring home Shively before Underhill tripled home Crook.

After Gavin Lehenbauer scored in the top of the sixth, Monroe City opened up an eight-run advantage.

The Bulldogs tagged Panthers reliever Shively for five runs over 2 2/3 innings to get back into the game, but Verdier entered with one on and two out in the seventh to shut the door.

Monroe City (4-10) faces Macon on Saturday in the quarterfinals of the Class 3 District 8 tournament in Palmyra.