Surprising Vikings on top of division

Published 12:00 am Monday, April 5, 2010

For two seasons Warren Central was in rebuilding mode.

With a roster full of young players and a demanding Class 6A schedule, the Vikings struggled to break into double digits in the win column. They won eight games in 2008 and 10 in 2009.

Halfway through the 2010 season, it appears the rebuilding project is complete. WC (12-7) has already surpassed its win total from last year. With a few more victories it can celebrate its first division championship since 2005.

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

“The whole time I knew this was a special bunch of kids and it was a matter of time before we gelled,” said Josh Abraham, in his second season as WC’s coach. “We knew they had it in them, and to see their growth these last two years is astronomical. This is a team that can make a run.”

Everything has fallen into place for the Vikings this season. They’re averaging almost seven runs per game and have scored 10 or more runs eight times already. Dylan Wooten leads the team with a .421 average, eight doubles and 24 RBIs.

Its pitchers have also been solid, posting a 2.52 team ERA. That’s nearly three runs lower than last season. Led by ace Jay Harper (3-1, 24 strikeouts in 28 1/3 innings) and No. 2 starter Colby Key (2-0, 2.55 ERA in 22 innings), opponents are hitting just .226 against WC.

The combination of steady pitching and explosive offense has allowed them to close in on a playoff berth by the midpoint of the division schedule. WC is in first place in Division 4-6A with a 5-0 record, and has a three-game lead over Vicksburg.

The Vikings — who have won six in a row overall — could have clinched a playoff spot last week if VHS had swept Clinton. The teams split, so WC will have to wait until it plays Vicksburg on April 13 and Clinton on April 16 for its next chance at the postseason. WC can clinch a playoff berth with a win in either game, or the division championship by winning both.

“We like where we’re at,” Abraham said. “Any time you can win division games and play like we have, we like our position. We still have some work to do, though.”

Contact Ernest Bowker at