Baseball Roundup: Massey’s homer lifts PCA over Benton; St. Al, Tallulah Academy cruise to victories

Published 9:25 am Wednesday, March 27, 2024

It took until two-thirds of the way through the season, but Porter’s Chapel Academy finally won a close game.

To be fair, though, it hasn’t played many of them.

John Wyatt Massey put the Eagles ahead with a two-run home run in the bottom of the fifth inning, then locked down Benton Academy with a strong pitching performance as Porter’s Chapel won 5-3 on Tuesday.

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It was only the second time this season that PCA (14-6) has played a game decided by less than five runs. Seventeen of its 20 games — win or lose — have ended early because of the 10-run mercy rule.

The Eagles took a 3-1 lead after two innings on Tuesday, as Massey hit an RBI single, Taylor Labarre scored on a passed ball and Conley Johnston scored on a double play.

Benton scored twice in the top of the third inning to tie it, and then Massey untied it with his home run in the fifth. He finished 2-for-3 with three RBIs.

Massey walked a batter and gave up a hit over the last two innings, but neither runner advanced beyond first base.

PCA won its fourth game in a row. It will play a pivotal MAIS Region 4-3A series next week against Franklin Academy. The teams play in Winnsboro, La., on April 2, and then a doubleheader in Vicksburg on April 5.

St. Aloysius 9, Central Hinds 5
St. Aloysius (8-7) rode a big first inning to a victory over Central Hinds (7-10) on Tuesday for its sixth win in seven games.

The Flashes sent 13 batters to the plate and scored seven runs in the top of the first to take an early lead they never relinquished. Walt Andrews and Barrett Shows hit RBI singles during the rally, while three more runs were scored on walks and hit batters with the bases loaded.

Pierson Smith had three RBIs for St. Al.

Keller Bradley and Laken Bradley both were 2-for-4 with one RBI and a run scored. Laken Bradley also pitched the last three innings and allowed only one run to earn a save.

Clark Hobson doubled and drove in a run, while also pitching four solid innings. He gave up four runs and struck out three batters to earn the win.

Price Foil was 2-for-4 with two RBIs and two runs scored for Central Hinds. Hayden Mathes was 2-for-3 with one RBI and a run scored.

St. Al will take the rest of the week off for Easter break and return to action April 2 with a long road trip to Bossier City, La., to face MAIS District 4-5A rival Providence Classical.

Tallulah Academy 19, Mt. Salus 0
J.T. McDaniel went 2-for-3 with a home run, five RBIs and three runs scored, Tripp Gayle was 2-for-2 with two RBIs and two runs scored, and Tallulah Academy (12-5, 3-0 MAIS District 3-2A) had no trouble dispatching Mt. Salus Christian.

Tallulah scored 14 runs in the first inning and won it in three via the mercy rule. The Trojans piled up 12 hits, with 10 of those going for extra bases, and also drew 11 walks.

McDaniel had a double in addition to his two-run homer, while Gayle hit a double and a triple.

Hayes Hopkins had a big day at the plate and on the mound. The senior struck out all six batters he faced in two innings, and combined with Luke Moberley on an abbreviated no-hitter. Moberley had three strikeouts in his one inning of work.

At the plate, Hopkins was 2-for-3 with a double, triple, two RBIs and three runs scored.

Tallulah and Mt. Salus will play again Thursday at 5 p.m., in a doubleheader at Tallulah.

About Ernest Bowker

Ernest Bowker is The Vicksburg Post's sports editor. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post's sports staff since 1998, making him one of the longest-tenured reporters in the paper's 140-year history. The New Jersey native is a graduate of LSU. In his career, he has won more than 50 awards from the Mississippi Press Association and Associated Press for his coverage of local sports in Vicksburg.

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