Warren Central gets split at Mid-Mississippi Classic

Published 12:00 am Saturday, March 6, 2010

PEARL — Two things have already become apparent for Warren Central early this season.

When it scores a lot of runs, it wins. When it struggles at the plate, it doesn’t win.

Both ends of that spectrum were evident on Friday.

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The Vikings blasted Lewisburg for 16 hits in a 19-4 victory, then managed only five hits in a 6-4 loss to McGill-Toolen in the second game of a Mid-Mississippi Classic doubleheader at Pearl High School.

In three wins this season, Warren Central (3-3) has scored 42 runs. In its three losses, WC has scored seven.

“It just seems like it comes in bunches,” WC coach Josh Abraham said. “In the games we’ve lost, it’s like the bats just haven’t come around.”

They certainly came around against Lewisburg (2-2).

WC jumped on the Patriots for six runs in the bottom of the first inning, then put the game away with an 11-run second. Jimmie Elliott went 2-for-3 with an RBI and two runs scored and De Kelley was 2-for-2 with a double and two RBIs. Carlos Gonzalez and Buddy Cook also had two hits and an RBI each.

Colby Key earned the victory with three innings of two-hit, shutout ball.

As the chilly night air settled in, however, the Vikings’ bats cooled off too. They never seemed able to sustain a rally against McGill-Toolen (5-3), taking themselves out of innings with bad baserunning or bad at-bats. WC had three runners caught stealing — two of them on a bizarre inning-ending double play in the first — and was just 2-for-13 with runners in scoring position.

“We kind of hit the ball well. We just didn’t get the timely hitting like we got in the first game,” said Gonzalez, who doubled and scored a run against McGill-Toolen. “We just didn’t come out swinging. We knew they were going to have one big inning and that came in the first inning.”

WC’s only clutch hit came in the third inning when Josh Stuckey delivered a two-run single to center to tie the game at 3. McGill-Toolen regained the lead in the top of the fourth when courtesy runner Bentley Evans stole third and scored on a throwing error. Michael Radoslovich added an RBI single in the fifth and in the sixth Matthew Wojciechowski banged a solo home run off the scoreboard in right center to put the Jackets up 6-4.

Contact Ernest Bowker at ebowker@vicksburgpost.com