Gators can’t get over Center Hill in baseball playoff opener

Published 11:40 pm Friday, April 26, 2024

The Vicksburg Gators had a couple of chances to strike first and shock the Mississippi baseball world in their playoff series against Center Hill.

They weren’t able to, though, and eventually the Mustangs did what the Gators couldn’t.

Hudson Marascuilo homered to ignite a six-run rally in the third inning that broke the game open, and Center Hill went on to win 10-0 in Game 1 of the MHSAA Class 6A playoff series on Friday.

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Vicksburg (7-15) left runners on base in two of the first three innings, including two runners in scoring position in the third. It did not score either time, however, and Center Hill finally broke a scoreless tie with two runs in the bottom of the third. Ayden Rodgers hit an RBI single and scored on another single by Houston Green for a 2-0 lead.

Marascuilo’s two-run home run in the fourth pushed it to 4-0, and the Gators started to come unwound after that. A hit batter, a balk, and three errors brought in four more runs to blow it wide open.

Whitman Key added an RBI triple in the fifth inning and Center Hill (18-9) won via the mercy rule.

Marascuilo finished 2-for-3 with two RBIs for Center Hill.

Green was 1-for-2 with one RBI and one run scored, and also pitched a complete game. Green only allowed one hit and one walk and struck out 10 batters. He retired the last eight batters he faced, with the last seven of those via strikeout.

Mickell Jones led off the third inning with a single for Vicksburg’s only hit.

Game 2 of the best-of-three series is Saturday at 7 p.m. at Vicksburg High’s Showers Field. The Gators need to win to force a deciding Game 3 Monday at Center Hill.

MHSAA Class 6A baseball playoffs
Game 1 – Center Hill 10, Vicksburg 0
Game 2 – Saturday, 7 p.m., at Vicksburg
Game 3 – Monday, TBA, at Center Hill (if necessary)