PCA grabs district title|Prep baseball

Published 12:00 am Friday, April 16, 2010

Amidst all the celebrations last spring, as they plowed toward the MAIS Class A championship, there was one the Porters Chapel Eagles missed.

On Thursday, they finally checked it off the list.

PCA obliterated winless Mt. Salus in a doubleheader, 15-0 and 16-1, to clinch the District 5-A title. It’s PCA’s eighth district championship in 10 years. Ironically, the two times it did not win the district — in 2006 and 2009 — it went on to win the Class A title.

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

This championship merited a photo in front of the newly-unveiled sign on Pierce Field’s right field wall commemorating the program’s success. Bigger victories, players said, will result in bigger celebrations.

“It’s pretty good. But it’s not that big because it’s not a playoff game or South State, or a state championship,” said PCA outfielder Reed Gordon, who hit a two-run double, drove in two runs and scored three in game two of Thursday’s doubleheader.

PCA (13-10, 10-2 District 5-A) will open the Class A playoffs on Tuesday at Heidelberg Academy. Games two and three of the best-of-three series will be at PCA next Friday.

The Eagles had clinched a playoff berth before Thursday’s games against Mt. Salus (0-10, 0-8), but needed to sweep to win the district title outright. Despite some early sluggishness, it was never a concern that they wouldn’t.

Both games ended by the 15-run mercy rule in the bottom of the third inning. PCA outhit Mt. Salus 19-5, and in game two the homestanding Eagles sent a total of 23 men to the plate in the first two innings. PCA probably would have batted around again in the third, but the game ended when pinch-hitter Caze Brewer drove in his team’s 16th run with a fielder’s choice for the first out of the inning.

Matthew Warren allowed one hit and struck out eight in three innings in game one. He also went 3-for-3 with a double, three RBIs and three runs scored.

Mt. Salus’ Tyler Gnade led off game two with a single and scored on a double by Ben Wiggins to give the visiting Eagles a short-lived 1-0 lead. PCA belted four extra-base hits in the bottom of the inning, including back-to-back RBI triples by Jeff Hearn and Richie Bufkin, and scored six runs.

PCA added seven more runs in the bottom of the second and three in the third to end it. Cameron Upton’s two-run double was the only hit in the second inning.

“I felt like our guys did what they needed to do. We knew it was Mt. Salus, they didn’t have a win, but the guys did a good job,” PCA coach Jerry Bourne said. “It’s hard to get motivated for a game like this, but at some point you have to play against the game, not just play against the opponent.”

Contact Ernest Bowker at ebowker@vicksburgpost.com