Published 12:00 am Tuesday, April 13, 2004

eliminated from playoffs

Missy Gators easily handled by Pascagoula

PASCAGOULA It was business as usual for the Pascagoula softball team on Saturday.

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The Lady Panthers began their defense of the Class 5A South State title with a 6-0, 13-1 sweep of Vicksburg. Pascagoula (22-6-1) advanced to the South State semifinals where the Lady Panthers will either travel to Harrison Central or host Hancock in Thursday’s first game.

Pascagoula got its normal steady pitching from Heather Prisock in both games and used a six-run second inning to key the second victory.

Prisock pitched five innings in the first game and scattered three hits while striking out three. She gave up a lone run on three hits in the second game before shutting down the Missy Gators (8-16) the rest of the way.

“We’re going to enjoy this right now because we know it’s going to get much harder from now on,” said Pascagoula coach Leigh Hanna. “We came out a bit flat in the first game, and that had me worried. But we hit the ball much better in the second game, and we got a few breaks that went our way.

“Getting that big lead helped us to relax.”

Pascagoula scored three first-inning runs in the first game and added another in the second to take a 4-0 lead. Two Vicksburg errors contributed to the three-run first inning. Shortstop Courtney Davis, who had four hits in the game, had a two-run single, and catcher Alyson Stokes added a run-scoring sacrifice fly. Davis’ single in the second inning made it 4-0. In the sixth inning, Pascagoula had four hits that led to a pair of runs.

Courtney Prentiss, Claiborne Bryant and Whitney Smith all had hits for Vicksburg in the first game.

In the second game, the Missy Gators took a 1-0 lead in the first inning as they touched Prisock for three hits. Heather Pritchard’s single drove in Bryant, who singled earlier in the inning.

The Lady Panthers came back to score three first-inning runs and were aided by a pair of Vicksburg errors.

Then came the second inning, when Pascagoula sent 10 batters to the plate and had six hits.

Smith, who had three hits in the second game, and Stokes had RBIs in the third inning. Smith’s single drove in Patterson and Smith later scored on a double by Stokes.

Smith and Sarah Burgett each drove in runs in the fourth inning for Pascagoula.