Trojans take down Wildcats
By By Steve Swogetinsky/special to The Star
March 20, 2004
Though both teams scored seven runs in the sixth, the consistent play of Northeast Lauderdale in the early innings was the difference in the Trojans' 13-8 victory over the visiting Meridian High Wildcats Friday afternoon in prep baseball action.
The Trojans took advantage of their opportunities throughout the game. Jason Pritchett led off the first inning with a walk, and later scored on a wild pitch. Catcher Chad Brunson got on first on an error, and scored with two outs on a hard-hit ball by Jeremy Barnacastle, making it 2-0 after the first.
Meridian, which left two men on base after the first and second innings, scored in the top of the third when Rodney Warren singled in Tyler McMullen, making the score 2-1. But with men on second and third, the Wildcats failed to score again in the inning.
The Trojans put two more runs on the scoreboard in the third. Pritchett reached base on a singled and scored on Cody Chance's hit, making the score 3-1 with no outs. The Trojans loaded the bases but Meridian turned a double-play to put two outs on the board. Nathan Peden then doubled in Chance to give Northeast a 4-1 lead.
Andrew Siciliano hit a double and Matt Hall slugged a single to lead off the fourth inning. Pritchett then singled in Siciliano and Hall scored on an error to give Northeast a 6-1 lead.
The sixth inning seemed to belong to the Meridian Wildcats as they rallied to take the lead. Meridian loaded the bases with Warren leading off with a double, Kimone McDade being hit by a pitch and Clark Bullock getting on with a single. Two runs scored on Cliff Harris' double with two outs. Meridian then loaded the bases again, and two more runs scored on Tyler McMullen's single, making the score 6-5.
Cordera Eason tied the game at 6 when he singled in Kedrick Martin, and Meridian went in front 8-6 when Warren hit his second double of the inning to bring in two more runs.
But the Trojans came back with seven runs of their own and retook the lead, thanks in part to some Meridian miscues. It started when, with one out, Siciliano struck out, but the catcher dropped the ball and the batter made it to first without being tagged. Hall singled and stayed alive, thanks to an error at second base on a fielders choice that loaded the bases. Chance picked up an RBI when his walk brought in a run. Then Brunson cleaned the plate with a three RBI double.
This put Northeast Lauderdale back in front, 10-8, but the Trojans weren't finished yet. Barnacastle singled in another run. Then two more runs scored on an error, giving the Trojans a 13-8 advantage.
Meridian would score two runs in the seventh but with bases loaded, saw a runner nailed at the plate for the second out of the inning. Pritchett fanned the last batter to preserve the win.
Peden was the winning pitcher while reliever Kedrick Martin took the loss.
Coach Nelson praised his team for not giving up in the bottom of the sixth.
Northeast outhit Meridian 12-11. Pritchett hit a double and two singles to lead Northeast while Warren's two doubles and a single paced the Wildcats.
The Trojans have one game scheduled next week when they visit Mendenhall on Tuesday. Meridian also returns to action Tuesday as the Wildcats visit Northwest Rankin.