Hawks clip Eagles in extra innings

Zack Perkins crushes a solo homer on an 0-2 pitch in the Myrtle fifth. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Zack Perkins crushes a solo homer on an 0-2 pitch in the Myrtle fifth. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

BY DENNIS CLAYTON
MYRTLE – Myrtle and West Union needed eight innings to settle their Division 2-1A baseball opener and the Hawks were able to scratch out a 5-4 win. With bases loaded, the Hawks scored on a hit by pitch to take the narrow win.
“It was a big win, it’s one of those that seemed like a marathon game,” Myrtle coach Robert Gordon said. “I know it just went eight innings, but I was thinking, man I don’t know how much more I can take. I was glad we scratched that run across at the end, but I credit their pitcher, he’s good, he’s really good.
Myrtle scored in the bottom of the first as leadoff batter Lane Bishop doubled and later scored to put the Hawks up 1-0. Dillon Kennon extended the Hawks’ lead to 2-0 in the second as he got the leadoff walk and scored.
West Union came back in the third to take a 3-2 lead as catcher Luke Willard reached on an error. Riley Bogue came on to as a courtesy runner. Cole Phillips reached and Andrew Childers was hit by pitch to load the bases. John Austin Taylor drove in one run and two more scored on miscues by the Hawks.
Myrtle came right back in the bottom of the inning to tie as Brandon Perkins led off with a single and was driven in on Jacob Kent’s RBI double.
Zach Perkins broke the tie in the bottom of the fifth as he ripped a home run over the left field fence. Perkins was 0-2 in the count when he launched his shot to left to put the Hawks up 4-3.
The Eagles tied the score at 4-4 in the top of the sixth as John Austin Taylor doubled and later scored on Hayden Basil’s RBI single.
Both team threatened in the seventh inning but two plays at the play left the score deadlocked. In the Eagle seventh, a bunt attempt to push across the lead run failed as pitcher Brandon tagged out the runner trying to score from third. Myrtle got the leadoff batter on in their half of the inning and attempted to score him from second on Dillon Kennon’s single, but Eagle centerfielder Cole Phillips threw out the lead runner at the plate.
West Union threatened again in the eight after getting runners aboard at second and third with one out, but Brandon shut down the Eagle threat with back-to-back strikeouts.
Bishop singled and reached with one out and eventually wound up at third with still only one out. West Union opted to load the bases to set up the force at any base, but Myrtle took the win as Zach Perkins was hit to drive in the winning run.
“It was a great game,” Gordon said. “It was a great game to be a part of win or loss, I told my kids that if we had lost, I would have still been proud of them.”
Both starters Brandon for Myrtle and Taylor for West Union went the distance in the contest and gave their teams a quality outing and opportunity to win.
“When we started the game, I felt like we were tight, but I really feel like it means something to this group and it’s the first real big game they’ve played and once we got over that hump, we really battled,” West Union coach Ashley Russell said. “Both teams battled and that turned into one of the better baseball games that I’ve seen in a while. I was proud of my guys, we had a number of guys that made plays. John Austin Taylor battled for us and really has become a good leader and did everything he could to win, I put him in a bad situation there at the end of the game, that one’s on me.

Urchins have split decisions in Pontotoc tournament

Witt Roaton delivers the pitch to the plate for the Urchins. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Witt Roaton delivers the pitch to the plate for the Urchins. Photo by Dennis Clayton.


BY DENNIS CLAYTON
East Union won their game one in the late innings and lost game two in extra innings at the Pontotoc baseball tournament on Saturday. The Urchins defeated TCPS 7-0 and lost to North Pontotoc 4-3.
Witt Roaton had a brilliant performance on the mound in game one, allowing only one hit while striking out 11 and walking three to shutout the Eagles.
The Urchins scored three runs in the sixth and four runs in the seventh to claim the win.
Cade Bell had a hit and RBI to lead the Urchin offense. Joel Wilkinson had the other Urchin hit of the night.
In the second game, North Pontotoc rallied for two runs in the seventh to tie and scored the game-winner in the eighth.
East Union is 1-3 on the season.
Thomas Moore fouls off the pitch down the third baseline. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Thomas Moore fouls off the pitch down the third baseline. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Mooreville edges Lady Urchins in softball

Callie Frazier singles and drives in the East Union run. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Callie Frazier singles and drives in the East Union run. Photo by Dennis Clayton.


BY DENNIS CLAYTON
MOOREVILLE – East Union’s Lady Urchins gave perennial 3A power Mooreville all they could handle on Saturday before falling 2-1 in a hastily scheduled game due to recent rains.
“I love playing Mooreville, in my opinion they are the best of the best,” East Union coach Josh Blythe said. “They’ve got two pitchers that are as good as anybody that I’ve ever seen in high school. I told our kids today that I wanted them to compete every pitch and I thought we did that.”
East Union threatened in the first inning, getting a base runner to third with one out, but Mooreville ended the threat on a double play without allowing the score.
The teams combined for a scoreless contest through three innings as Callie Frazier of East Union and Summer Cryder of Mooreville faced the minimum number of batters through the frames.
East Union scored the game’s opening run in the top of the fourth as Raelee Bell drove a pitch deep into center that was mishandled and ended up at third with no outs.
Callie Frazier drove in Bell with her one-out RBI single to right and the Lady Urchins took a 1-0 lead. Frazier was stranded following a strikeout and ground-out that ended the inning.
Mooreville came back in the bottom of the fourth to take the lead. With one out, the Lady Troopers used a bunt single, followed by a base hit to put runners aboard. A deep sacrifice fly to left scored the lead runner and the next batter singled to drive in the tie-breaking run.
“I thought that was a fantastic outing by Frazier, that’s three actually,” Blythe said. “She’s just giving us the chance to win every time. She’s a warrior. I love the makeup of this team, I think the future is definitely bright for them.”
Frazier allowed two runs on four hits while striking out three with no walks.
Lady Urchin infield meets at the mound before the first pitch. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Lady Urchin infield meets at the mound before the first pitch. Photo by Dennis Clayton.


Emily Bruce catches the popup on the infield as Rebecca Sheffield looks on from short. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Emily Bruce catches the popup on the infield as Rebecca Sheffield looks on from short. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Ingomar tops Wheeler in playoff action

Lauren Wooley connects on a three during the second quarter. Photo by Dennis Clayton

Lauren Wooley connects on a three during the second quarter. Photo by Dennis Clayton


INGOMAR – Ingomar fell behind early in their game against Wheeler as the Lady Eagles took an early 2-0 lead on Saturday. The Lady Falcons proceeded to score 22 unanswered points for the remainder of the quarter and put the game out of reach at 22-2. The Lady Falcons won going away by the score of 87-27.
Ingomar’s offense was clicking all day as the Lady Falcons had five players in double figures.
“We talk a lot about it, trying to start fast, especially when you’ve got a home court advantage because that gets your home crowd into it and it can have an adverse effect on the other team,” Ingomar coach Trent Adair said. “We did have a good start.”
Lauren Wooley came off the Lady Falcon bench to score three 3-pointers in the second quarter to keep the offense rolling for Ingomar.
“She was hot,” Adair said. “She played as well as she has all year and shot it well, that’s for sure.”
Ingomar went up 49-17 at the half and stretched it to 76-23 after three quarters.
Mallory Russell led the Lady Falcons in scoring with 19 points while Wooley finished with 13. Lindsay Hall and Carson Grisham had 12 points apiece and Lauren Thompson scored 11.

Lady Eagles soar in road wins

Marley Long is surrounded by Lady Pirates. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

BY DENNIS CLAYTON
COFFEEVILLE – West Union took their game on the road and took wins over Coffeeville and Shelby Broad Street on consecutive nights to stay alive in the 1A Girls State tournament. With the wins, the Lady Eagles advance to play Bogue Chitto at noon on Wednesday in Jackson.
West Union 71, Coffeeville 59
The Lady Eagles sank the playoff hopes of the Lady Pirates with their 20-12 scoring advantage in the third quarter. The Lady Eagles went on a 6-0 run early in the half to stretch their lead to 38-30 and followed with another run of eight points to extend the lead to 48-32.
“We talked about it at halftime about how many opportunities that we just blew, we had so many easy looks, layups and stuff off their press in the first half and we just missed them,” West Union coach Matt Thompson said. “It was great to see us come out and make a couple of threes and get a little rhythm and go on those runs. That provided us a little cushion and in the fourth quarter, Coffeeville wasn’t going to go away or lay down, they scrapped, scrapped and scrapped. We made the necessary free throws that we needed to, I would have liked to have seen us make more.
The first half was tightly contested, West Union held the biggest lead at seven points, but Coffeeville came back to tie the game midway through the period. There were eight lead changes during the first half which ended with the Lady Eagles holding a narrow 30-27 lead.
“We knew what we had to do down the stretch to win in a tough environment,” Thompson said. “Marley Long was attacking and whenever she is under control and attacking, she’s a good ball player. We figured that out the last three games, so maybe she will continue to do that.
Four Lady Eagles scored in double figures led by Long’s 22 points. Gracen Conlee had 17, Savannah Shirley scored 14 and Kylie Massengill hit for 10 points.
The Lady Eagles are making their first trip to Jackson since 2005.
West Union improved to 21-10 on the season.
West Union 70, Broad Street 48
The Lady Eagles rolled out to a 21-6 lead after a quarter and never allowed Broad Street to get any closer than 12 points for the rest of the contest. West Union led 39-23 at the half.
Gracen Conlee had a huge game for the Lady Eagles as she led all scorers with 30 points. Marley Long scored 23 and Savannah Shirley had 10 points.

Gracen Conlee led all scorers with 30 points on Friday. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Lady Eagles down Broad Street 



Gracen Conlee connects on the shot from the lane. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

West Union traveled to Broad Street and won a convincing 70-48 opening round win in the 1A state playoffs on Friday. 

The Lady Eagles took a 21-6 lead after a quarter and went into the half up 39-23.

Gracen Conlee lead the offensive attack with 30 points and Marley Long had 23. Savannah Shirley was also in double figures with 10 points.

West Union advanced to the second round and will travel to Coffeeville for a 6:00 game on Saturday. (today)

Savannah Shirley sets the Lady Eagle offense. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Savannah Shirley sets the Lady Eagle offense. Photo by Dennis Clayton.


Marley Long drives along the baseline for the Lady Eagles. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Marley Long drives along the baseline for the Lady Eagles. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Falcons rally late against Coldwater for playoff win

Cade Hall stretches out for the score on his layup. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Cade Hall stretches out for the score on his layup. Photo by Dennis Clayton.


BY DENNIS CLAYTON
Ingomar trailed late in the fourth quarter against Coldwater in the opening round of State 1A basketball playoffs and needed a big play as well as someone to step up to lead the team. They got both, as the Falcon defense created a turnover which Laquain Foster turned into momentum-swinging points.
“That was probably the play of the game, we trapped it hard here and they floated it across and Laquain (Foster) stole it going back across here and laid it in to cut it to three,” Ingomar coach Jonathan Ashley said. ““With three minutes to go, it wasn’t looking good, but Laquain took over and the rest of the kids just really got after it out there. We made some things go our way defensively and got some stops.” Coldwater had built a seven point lead over the Falcons, 63-56 and things were looking bleak with three minutes to go.
Ingomar scored a basket to cut the lead to 63-58 with 2:19 left. That was when the trapping Falcon defense and Foster turned in the game-changing play as Foster stole the pass and scored a layup to energize the home crowd.
Cade Hall’s three pointer from the top of the key put the Falcons in the lead at 64-63 and fired up his teammates as they went on a 7-2 run afterwards to close the deal and take the win.
“That was a big shot,” Ashley said. “He’s (Hall) our most improved player. I’ve got a bunch of candidates for that, but just as far as having the confidence to step up there and make a big shot. He’s a good kid and I couldn’t be prouder for him because he deserves that.”
Foster scored 14 of the Falcons’ 24 fourth quarter points to lead the comeback.
The game was close throughout with the biggest leads being seven points, Ingomar led 11-4 early and Coldwater held the 63-56 advantage late in the game.
There were numerous ties and 10 lead changes during the game.
Coldwater held narrow leads after the first three quarters, 15-13 after the opening period, 29-27 at the half and 50-47 after three.
“They (Ingomar) gutted it out and that’s what this playoff basketball is all about,” Ashley said. “I couldn’t be happier for them or prouder of them.”
Foster led Ingomar in scoring with 25 points. Kelton Hall had 19 and Cade Hall added 13.
Ingomar improves to 20-13 on the season and will face Jumpertown in the next round on Saturday.
Laquain Foster led the Ingomar comeback against Coldwater. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Laquain Foster led the Ingomar comeback against Coldwater. Photo by Dennis Clayton.