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MCC opens 2002 season with doubleheader split

By By Jeff Byrd/staff writer
Feb. 10, 2002
A gorgeous February day marked the beginning of the baseball season for Meridian Community College on Saturday at Scaggs Field. As openers go, the end result was partly cloudy for the Eagles.
Meridian won its opener 8-4 behind a three-run homer by Tyler Scarbrough in the bottom of the fifth inning. Former West Lauderdale star Todd Doolittle picked up the win in his initial junior college start.
In the second game, Wallace-Hanceville took advantage of a rusty Justin Bounds to slug three home runs in a 10-0 romp that was called after five innings.
The same two teams will meet today for a double-header in Hanceville, Ala.
Head coach Mike Federico said Hanceville deserved credit for getting a Saturday split.
The first game win was a testament to a big swing by Scarbrough.
Meridian trailed 3-2 heading to the bottom of the fifth in the opener. Hanceville had erased an early 1-0 Eagle lead behind a three-run rally off Doolittle.
Two of the runs came off a two-out blast by Adam Gilmer to dead center field.
Down 3-1, the Eagles picked up a run in the fourth when Nathan Sanders walked and then went to third off a double by Drew Van Sickle. Sanders scored on a ground out by Brian Page.
In the fifth, Trave Hopkins reached on the first of what would be three Hanceville errors in the at bat. Brad McKee delivered a one-out single and Scarbrough followed with a dead-pull home run to left-field. The three-run shot blasted MCC into the lead at 5-3.
Sanders would score the inning's fourth run thanks to a pair of Hanceville errors. The second came on an overthrow of third base following a passed-ball.
Up 6-3, Doolittle got into a jam when David West singled and Blake Jones drew a one-out walk. Federico pulled Doolittle for left-handed reliever Tim Jones of Pascagoula.
Jones did the job getting a double-play to short to end the inning.
In the Eagle sixth, McKee added insurance with a two-run homer to left-center to make it 8-3. Hanceville got a run back in the seventh to account for the 8-4 final.
Josh Bryant took the loss for Hanceville. He went 4.2 innings allowing six runs off five hits. The Hanceville defense made five errors behind him.
McKee, another West Lauderdale product, went 2-for-4 in his MCC debut with a homer and two RBIs. Scarbrough also had two hits and drove in three. Page had a single and RBI while Van Sickle scored the team's first run and also had a double.
Wallace-Hanceville 10
Meridian 0
Hanceville scored four runs in the second and had five more in the third to rough up Meridian's Bounds who was making his first start in two years since missing all of last year with arm surgery.
David West's homer keyed the second inning. Gilmer had his second of the day to cap the third. Thomas Woo and West both finished 2-for-3 to lead Hanceville to its first win of the year.
Pitcher Zack Watson scattered four hits in the five-inning shutout. He struck out six.
Meridian got a hit each from Van Sickle, Sanders, Chris Wright and Page.
Following Sunday's trip to Hanceville, Meridian heads to Pearl River on Wednesday for a single game.