Thursday, March 12, 2009
Patriots ease past Lee (Ark.)
Marshall Academy opened district baseball play last week with three easy wins over Lee (Ark.).
Sandwiched between those contests were a non-district loss at Magnolia Heights and a non-district win at Thrasher. The Patriots moved into this week with a 7-1 overall record.
Coach Johnny Ray’s squad outscored the Lee Cougars 25-0 in a doubleheader March 3 at home.
Marshall won the opener 10-0. Senior Harris Gholson struck out 10 and did not walk a batter in five innings to get his first decision of the year.
“Regardless of the opponent, I was proud of how Harris pitched and competed,” Coach Ray said. “He has been working extremely hard and I am glad to see the fruits of his labor pay off.”
Offensively, Parker James carried the big stick, going three for three with a double and five runs batted in. Joey Brock had two hits and Jake Omedeo had a double.
Marshall coasted to a 15-0 victory in the nightcap.
Seventh grader John Wesley Ray got the victory in the run-ruled, shortened game. He struck out six and allowed only a bloop single in three innings of work.
“With the number of games we had this week, it was good to be able to dip down into the talent pool and bring up some of the younger ones who could give us some innings,” Ray said. “J.W. did exactly what we needed him to; he threw strikes.
“This is just a testament as to what is coming out of the seventh and eighth grade program. The future of this program looks very bright.”
Joey Omedeo was one for two with three RBI. Chris Gardner had a double and two RBI.
The Patriots invaded Senatobia Wednesday night and lost a wild and crazy contest to Magnolia Heights, 15-14 in eight innings.
“This was a heartbreaker to lose, but playing a quality opponent like Magnolia Heights let us gage where we are as a team early in the year,” Coach Ray said.
Magnolia Heights went ahead 2-0 after one inning.
Marshall responded in the second, scoring five runs. Parker James singled; Caleb Byrd walked; Joey Brock had an infield single; Joey Omedeo reached on an error; Tyler Childers walked; and Hunter Bolden delivered the big blow with a two RBI double.
Marshall led 5-3 after three, and then the Chiefs rallied to go in front 10-5 after four innings.
Marshall scratched for two runs in the fifth to slice the deficit to 10-7. Bolden walked. James singled him home a couple batters later and then scored on an error.
Magnolia Heights added one in the bottom of the sixth to lead 11-7.
But the Patriots didn’t die. They tied the game at 11 in the seventh to send it to extra innings. Josh Vanderburg and Bolden led off the inning with doubles, followed by Jake Omedeo’s walk and James’ sacrifice fly RBI. Byrd was hit by a pitch and Elgin Lafever walked. The Patriots also scored a couple runs on wild pitches.
In the top of the eighth, MA took a 14-11 lead. Childers reached after striking out and the catcher throwing it away, Vanderburg was hit by a pitch and Bolden walked. James’ RBI single plated a run and two others scored on passed balls/wild pitches.
But the Chiefs pulled it out in the bottom of the eighth with four runs. A hit by a pitch and two walks to the first three batters opened the door for the Chiefs’ comeback. The winning run scored on a passed ball.
“Hunter and Parker single-handedly carried us.” Ray sad. “When we needed a big hit, they got it for us.”
The Pats visited Lee Academy (Marianna, Ark.) Thursday and finished the three-game district sweep of the Cougars – winning 14-4. Freshman Evan Hickman picked up his first varsity win on the mound.
Another freshman, Jacob McMinn, had three hits in four at-bats, including two doubles. Jake Omedeo was two for two with an RBI and two stolen bases. Vanderburg was two for three with a triple and RBI. Lafever added two hits.
Marshall Academy wrapped up the week with a 17-0 rout of public school Thrasher on the road.
Childers hit two home runs and added a double with five RBI to pace the Patriot offensive attack. Gardner added a homer and sacrifice fly with two RBI. Jake Omedeo was two for four with an RBI.
Winning Pitcher Joey Brock improved to 2-1 as he allowed one hit and struck out four in two innings of work. Will Patton struck out five with two solid, hitless innings of work.
“We really didn’t know what to expect going to Thrasher,” Ray said. “The final score was not indicative of the opponent. I felt like their hitters competed very well and gave Joey and Will some quality work on the mound.”
“I was proud of how Tyler swung the bat. He had been putting too much pressure on himself to perform. He finally just relaxed and had fun.”
The Patriots play at Indianola Thursday at 4 p.m.
The junior high team hosts Magnolia Heights Friday at 1 p.m.
Saturday, the varsity and junior varsity squads visit Water Valley at 12 noon.
Next Monday, March 16, the Patriots will play Bolton High School in the Lewis Harris Memorial Tournament, hosted by Bartlett High School, at 4 p.m.
Tuesday, March 17, they will face Rossville Christian and Millington at Miles Park in Millington at 4 p.m. and 7 p.m.
Wednesday, March 18, they will meet Covington at Bolton High School at 7 p.m.
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