Thursday, April 17, 2008
MA takes two of three from Kirk
By BARRY BURLESON
Marshall Academy lost its first district game of the season last week, but took two out of three from Kirk and remained in the driver’s seat for the top playoff seed.
The Patriots were scheduled to wrap up district play Monday and Tuesday of this week with doubleheaders versus Lee (Clarksdale) and Lee (Marianna, Ark.).
Coach Jimmy Hicks’ squad entered this week at 14-4 overall and 10-1 in the district.
Chris Gardner was the story in game one of this district series Monday, April 7, at Grenada. He tossed a no-hitter as Marshall routed the Raiders 9-1. Gardner, who threw just 83 pitches in seven innings of work, struck out seven.
“He did a marvelous job,” Hicks said. “He had it going on the mound and we played great defense behind him.”
Kirk’s lone run came in the fourth, courtesy of a walk, two ground outs which moved the runner to third and a wild pitch.
Marshall scored one in the first, two in the second, three in the third and one each in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings.
The Patriots pounded nine hits. Leading the offense was Tyler Sanders, who was three for three with a triple and two singles. Jake Omedeo added two singles. Justin Gray slapped a double. Getting a single each were Tyler Childers, Caleb Byrd and Gardner.
Marshall’s Joey Omedeo was injured early in the game when he was struck in the head by a foul ball while in the dugout. He was later taken to the Grenada hospital and then airlifted to LeBonheur in Memphis, Tenn. He underwent emergency surgery that night due to swelling and a blood clot, according to Hicks.
“He is going to be OK,” the coach said. “It was a freak accident. It was pretty scary.”
The two teams – Marshall and Kirk – then played a twinbill Thursday evening in Holly Springs.
MA rallied to win 3-2 in the first game. The Patriots tied the game at 2 in the fifth. Then Tyler Sanders provided the game-winning hit in the bottom of the seventh after Wesley Harris and Childers had singled and Hunter Bolden had walked.
Childers was three for four from the plate. Others getting singles in the game were Gray, Byrd and Bolden.
Shane Campbell went the distance for the pitching victory. He threw 76 pitches and struck out three.
“He did a great job,” Hicks said.
The MA Patriots left nine base runners stranded, committed three errors and dropped the nightcap 4-2.
“We gave it to them,” Hicks said. “We played pretty sloppy. It was a frustrating loss but we’re still in good shape (district-wise).”
MA outhit the Raiders eight to three.
Harris had two singles. Childers and Gardner each had a double. Adding a single each were Sanders, Gray, Jake Omedeo and Byrd.
Bolden took the mound loss. He gave up four runs on three hits, “all bloopers,” Hicks said. Gardner threw in relief, giving up no hits and striking out two.
“Kirk didn’t hit one hard,” Hicks said.
The state playoffs start next week, but MA, if it finishes first in District 1-AA, will receive a first-round bye. That means the Patriots would not start the post-season until the week of April 28.
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