WC blanked at Classic|[02/25/07]

Published 12:00 am Sunday, February 25, 2007

BRANDON – Warren Central finished a long weekend at the Mid-Mississippi Classic with a day that was painfully short.

Meridian pounded out 15 hits – including four each by Lindsey Spinks and Daniel Covert – and hammered Warren Central 11-1 on Saturday.

Spinks went 4-for-4 with a home run, two doubles and four RBIs, while Covert was 4-for-4 with four singles and four RBIs.

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The mercy rule loss was the third straight defeat for Warren Central in the Classic. In losses to West Lauderdale, Brandon and Meridian, the Vikings were outscored 24-3.

&#8220You’ve got to show up ready to play every game on our schedule. When you don’t, you get 10-run ruled,” WC coach Randy Broome said. &#8220Up until now, I’ve been real pleased with our effort.”

WC (1-5) never led against Meridian (4-2). Spinks led off the bottom of the first with a home run – a shot that was carried over the fence by a steady 20 mph wind – and the Wildcats added another run on an RBI single by Lon Burt in the second inning.

Warren Central got on the board in the top of the third on Heath Carroll’s sacrifice fly, but Meridian quickly put the game out of reach after that.

Meridian scored three runs in each of the next three innings, using a steady stream of line drives and hard-hit grounders to pummel the Vikings into submission.

Meridian had 11 of its 15 hits in the last three innings, and all but one player reached base at least once.

&#8220We’ve hit it pretty well all year. We’ve had 10-plus hits in five of our six games,” Meridian coach Chuck Butler said. &#8220We hit the ball hard. I’m real pleased with the way we’re swinging the bats.”

Meridian’s Dallas Hannah started the onslaught with a leadoff double in the third, and Spinks followed with another double off the wall in left to make it 3-1. Covert brought in Spinks with a single, and later scored himself when he stole third and the throw went into left field.

Another RBI double by Spinks and a two-run single by Covert stretched the lead to 8-1 in the fourth, and the bottom of Meridian’s order ended it in the fifth. Of the seven batters who came to the plate in the fifth, six reached base. Only Burt, who drove in a run with a sacrifice fly, failed to get on.

While the Wildcats were smashing the ball, the Vikings were flailing and wasting opportunities. Despite getting only three hits in the game, WC had runners on in every inning but the first. They had a runner thrown out at third base in the second inning, left the bases loaded in the fourth, and squandered five walks and a hit batter by Meridian’s pitchers.

&#8220We had a chance with the bases loaded and struck out. You’ve got to be able to put the ball in play there,” Broome said. &#8220We chased the ball out of the zone all day long. We didn’t hustle today and didn’t look like we wanted to be here.”