Warren Central blasts past Vicksburg, into playoffs

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, October 8, 2002

Hayley Martin of Warren Central, right, gives a piggy-back ride to teammate Lyn Strawn as Lady Vikes’ players including Keisha Blue, center, celebrate after beating rival Vicksburg, 12-2, and earning a berth in the Class 5A state playoffs. WC will win the division if Vicksburg beats Natchez today. (The Vicksburg Post/Melanie Duncan)

[10/08/02]Warren Central secured a spot in the playoffs Monday afternoon with a convincing 12-2 win over Vicksburg High.

Now, the Lady Vikes will cheer on the Missy Gators today for a chance to host a first-round playoff series.

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Warren Central (16-7, 3-1 Division 6-5A) got three hits each from Hayley Martin and Lyn Strawn to put Monday’s game out of reach early.

With Vicksburg hosting Natchez today, the Lady Vikes need a Vicksburg win to host in the first round. If Natchez wins, it would host the first-round series while the Lady Vikes will travel to either Harrison Central, Biloxi or Long Beach.

Warren Central and Natchez split the series this year, but Natchez gets the win by way of a run differential.

“Tomorrow, I will be a Gator fan,” said Warren Central coach Lucy Young, whose team is scheduled to host Lawrence County today. “We’ll hope things are going our way over there.”

Warren Central scored four in the first inning and one in the second before Vicksburg settled down defensively.

Katie Barnett had a single, double and scored two runs, Cookie Johnson had a single, triple and a run, Ashley Chaney had a single, double and an RBI and Keisha Blue had two singles, two runs scored and a pair of RBIs as Warren Central had 17 hits on the game.

Martin scattered eight hits and allowed just two runs in the top of the sixth, but the Lady Vikes had extended the lead to 7-0 at that time.

“It’s very disappointing, especially when hitting was the only difference in the game,” Vicksburg junior Brandi Parker said. “If we would have hit, we would have tied them or maybe even beaten them. But we can’t hit.

“It’s all mental because we hit good every day in practice, but when it comes to a game it’s like we all get nervous or something.”

Courtney Prentiss had three hits in the loss and Viola Howard added a double. Lauren Johnson had an RBI single in the sixth as Vicksburg pulled to 7-2.

Warren Central countered in the bottom of the sixth with five runs on three hits, but took advantage of four Vicksburg errors in the bottom of the sixth. The Missy Gators committed six on the night.

Even though WC led 12-2, the game went into the seventh inning where Martin retired the side in order to secure the victory.

“We just played better than they did,” Martin said. “The whole team hit today. We did really well.”