Five from county make All-State list

Published 12:00 am Friday, May 17, 2002

[05/17/02]Four local baseball players were named to this year’s Mississippi Association of Coaches All-State Baseball Team first team Thursday.

Warren Central’s Brian Pettway and Vicksburg High’s J.J. Brown were picked on the Class 5A first team. WC’s Joey Lieberman was selected second team.

In Class 1A, St. Aloysius’ Blake Warnock and Aaron George were also chosen first team.

Warnock and George guided the Flashes to the Class 1A state championship round, where they lost to Myrtle in two games.

“If they didn’t make it, nobody should have made it,” St. Al coach Joe Graves said. “They gave four years of their life to this program and did everything I ever asked them to do.”

Lieberman, a Meridian Community College signee, and Pettway will play in the Class 4A/5A All-Star Game in June along with teammate John Morgan Mims.

“I’m excited for both of them,” said Vikings coach Randy Broome, who led WC to a 25-10 record and the second round of the playoffs in his first year. “All of the hardwork, time and effort paid off. They are ranked among the most elite players in the state.”

Pettway, an Ole Miss signee, finished the year with a .500 batting average with 16 homers and 31 RBIs.

Brown will also play in the all-star game in June. He hit .388, with five triples, four homers and 19 RBIs as the Gators finished 12-16 against a tough schedule. Brown also stole 27 bases, second-best on the team.

“He is just an athlete,” VHS coach Jamie Creel said. “He’s so fast … he can cover the whole outfield. He possesses all the tools necessary to be making a living off of this.”

Brown signed a letter of intent to play football at Hinds next fall, but he will likely be selected in the Major League Baseball draft in June.

Also, St. Al’s Chase Smith was selected first team All-State in golf. His teammate, Don Marcus, was chosen to the second team.