Vikings roll along with doubleheader sweep

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, March 16, 2004

Warren Central assistant coach Jeff Wood, left, high-fives pitcher Eric Douglas after the fifth inning Saturday. (Melanie Duncan ThortisThe Vicksburg Post)

[3/14/04]Sophomore Nick Carson went a combined 6-for-6, including a triple and a double, for Warren Central as it swept a doubleheader against Tara, La., on Saturday.

Jake Turner had five hits and three RBIs, and Josh Gordon was 3-for-7 with four RBIs in the two games.

Email newsletter signup

Sign up for The Vicksburg Post's free newsletters

Check which newsletters you would like to receive
  • Vicksburg News: Sent daily at 5 am
  • Vicksburg Sports: Sent daily at 10 am
  • Vicksburg Living: Sent on 15th of each month

“We had timely hits,” Carson said of the two wins. “It takes teamwork, making the routine plays and hitting the ball when you need it.”

Warren Central (10-2) plated nine runs in the first two innings of game one to win 11-0 in five innings. Mark Different scattered seven hits in five innings of shutout ball for the win.

In game two, Tara (7-4) jumped ahead 4-0 in the top of the first, but the Vikings battled back with 15 hits and earned an 11-7 victory. Sophomore Eric Douglas entered in relief in the first inning and allowed one run in 4 1/3 innings to pick up the win.

“Our big focus when we came out was let’s stay focused for two games, let’s play it hard and let the chips fall,” WC coach Randy Broome said. “I’m proud of the way we’re swinging the bats right now.”

Zach Balthrop had trouble finding the corners of the plate to start the second game, allowing six straight hits and four runs in two-thirds of an inning.

“I told Zach that happens sometimes when you go out there,” Broome said. “All we’ve ever asked of our pitchers is to throw strikes. He was throwing strikes and they were hitting them. That’s just the way it goes.”

Broome quickly went to his bullpen. Douglas came in for the final out, but also had control problems in the second inning. He walked the first two batters before settling into a groove.

“At first I was a little nervous, but I settled down, threw strikes and did what I could do,” Douglas said. “I just threw it in there, let them hit the ball and let my defense do what they do best.”

Warren Central scored a pair of runs in the bottom of the first to cut the lead in half and added four more in the second on five hits for a 6-4 advantage.

John Rice Pettway had an RBI double in the third, and Gordon drove in Carson in the fourth as the Vikings continued their offensive assault.

“Our bats shut down, and they kept scoring every inning,” Tara coach Trevor Dupont said. “One or two runs an inning, and they came back and got the lead.”

Three WC errors in the fifth contributed to a pair of Trojan runs that trimmed the lead to 8-6, but the Vikings responded again.

Carson and Allen Carlisle led off the sixth with a pair of back-to-back doubles before Tara pulled starting pitcher Alex Clark, who allowed 10 runs on 15 hits in five innings.

Gordon hit a sacrifice fly to bring in Carson, and Carlisle and Vaughn Mims came home thanks to three Tara errors for an 11-6 lead.

The Trojans added one more in the top of the seventh, but never really threatened.

Carlisle, Pettway and Jake Turner each had a single, a double and an RBI in the second game.

Turner went 3-for-3 with a pair of RBIs, and Different was 2-for-2 with a triple and three RBIs in the first game.