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Missy Gators let one slip away to MC

Porters Chapel Academy’s Amy Beaugh, bottom, is covered in dust as Humphreys Academy’s Gentry Creekmore, left, and Leigh Hawkins cannot corral the ball on Tuesday. The Lady Eagles split the doubleheader. (Jon GiffinThe Vicksburg Post)

[8/18/04]For four innings Tuesday afternoon, the Vicksburg Missy Gators exorcised the demons that came with their 26-0 opening game loss to Brookhaven.

They hit, played defense and held an 8-1 lead over perennial state power Madison Central.

Then came the fifth inning.

A disastrous one.

Madison (3-2) scored 12 runs on eight hits and took advantage of six Missy Gators’ errors en route to a 20-9 win. The loss dropped VHS to 0-2.

“This one was very disappointing to me and I know it’s disappointing to these girls,” first-year Vicksburg coach Kori Crutchfield said. “They had the lead and just knew they were going to win the game. They just didn’t.”

After the Brookhaven loss one marred by poor defense and inconsistent hitting Crutchfield returned to practice working hard on defense and giving her players extra hitting time.

Early on Tuesday, it showed. Vicksburg scored seven first-inning runs on seven straight hits and stormed to a 7-0 lead. Heather Pritchard’s three-RBI single and Kristi Shelby’s two-run home run highlighted the rally.

JaWanda Bingham, who went 3-for-4, added an RBI single in the second as the Missy Gators took an 8-0 lead.

“They were hitting the ball early, but we showed our inexperience,” said MC coach Derek Topik, who starts only one senior and two juniors. “When we hit the ball, we can score runs.”

Madison scored one in the third before sending 16 batters to the plate in the fifth. Britnee Hobson led the charge with a single, triple and two RBIs in the inning, and Lindsey Vandevendor belted a single and a two-RBI double.

“When (Madison) started hitting, it was like we didn’t know what to do,” Crutchfield said. “We don’t give up, but we get down on ourselves and we don’t know how to pick ourselves back up.”

Vicksburg cut the lead to 13-9 in the bottom of the fifth, but a seven-run seventh for the Lady Jaguars extended the lead to 20-9. VHS went quietly in the seventh.

Temika Davenport had three hits and an RBI for Vicksburg, while Claiborne Bryant hit a pair of singles and scored two runs.

PCA 15-5, Humphreys 1-6

Amy Beaugh homered, Annie Beaugh and Kory Miller each had a double, and Porters Chapel Academy (7-2, 3-0 Conference 4-A) hammered Humphreys 15-1 in the first game of a doubleheader.

Ashley Johnson and Erin Purvis also had two hits apiece, and winning pitcher Lauren Johnson helped her own cause with a triple.

Johnson held Humphreys to two hits and no earned runs in four innings. She struck out seven.

In the second game, PCA managed just one hit and committed five errors in a 6-5 loss. Kory Miller took the loss for PCA, but allowed only two hits.

Lauren Johnson’s RBI double was the Lady Eagles’ lone hit.