The Sports Lounge presents… REMEMBER THEM: Houma Hawks
In this edition, I want to take a look back at the strangest, short-lived organization in Louisiana sports history. And it just so happens to have located right here in my hometown of Houma, LA. The Houma Hawks were officially announced on October 24, 2002 at the Terrebonne Parish Courthouse Annex. The team was set to begin play in 2003 and play their home games at Southland Field. Well, at least that is what they thought.
Before their first season began, an internet poll was held to name the team mascot. The winner was “Parrain” the Hawk. If that does not spell out south Louisiana, I don’t know what would. The team was an expansion member of the Southeastern League and the second time Houma would have a baseball franchise. In the 1940’s and 50’s, the Houma Indians played as members of the Evangeline League. As the season drew near, the team had spring training at Vandebilt Catholic High School and played exhibition games against Southern University and an American Legion team (seriously).
The 2003 season began for the Hawks and that would be the only season for the team. They were set to play a 72 game season, but after doing my research for this article, I have not found a true team record. According to pitcher wins and losses on www.baseball-reference.com they were 28-34, which equals a 62 game season. Be it as it may, their performance on the field was lackluster. But the team had their biggest problems off the field. After legal issues only allowed the Hawks to play three games at Southland Field, the team was left playing home games all around south Louisiana. They played at Morgan City High School, East St. John High School, Pete Goldsby Field in Baton Rouge, and even had “home” games at their opponent’s ballparks. After the season, Hawks’ ownership took legal action against Terrebonne Parish Recreation District 2-3 for only being able to play three games there even after they completed renovations to the field.
After looking at pictures of these fields, it is amazing to think that a semi-pro baseball team was forced to play there. But that is the short story of the Houma Hawks. They were a one-and-done franchise, but still a part of sports history in Louisiana. And since they were located in my hometown, they are a team I wanted to look into. I just wish that they could have been around a little while longer so I could have enjoyed a couple days at the ballpark that’s 2 minutes from my house. Thanks for stopping by again and until next time, enjoy the sports franchises that still remain.