Bobcats sweep Miss. Gulf Coast to clinch second straight MACJC South Division title

Written By: Shawn Wansley
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Date Submitted: 2011-04-26 21:51:27

 By Shawn Wansley

JCJC Sports Information Director

ELLISVILLE – The Jones County Junior College Bobcats know they will be playing some more baseball games at Community Bank Park this season.

JCJC closed regular season play here Tuesday evening with a doubleheader sweep of Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College. The Bobcats swept the Bulldogs, 4-1 and 10-1, using a pair of complete-game pitching performances from Andrew Pierce and Blake McIlwain.

That gives JCJC its second straight MACJC South Division championship and assures them of hosting the No. 4 seed from the North Division in an opening round best-of-three state playoff series on May 6-7. Opponents and gametimes are to be determined.

If the Bobcats win that series, then they would host the four-team, double elimination MACJC State Tournament May 12-14.

The Bobcats are now 31-13 overall and 17-5 in division play. They close regular season play with a 2 p.m. doubleheader on Saturday at Hinds Community College. The games will be audiocast on with a 1:55 p.m. airtime.

Gulf Coast plays at Southwest on Saturday and still must face Hinds in a makeup doubleheader. The Bulldogs drop to 18-20 overall, 11-9 in the division.

Bobcats 4, Bulldogs 1

Pierce gave up a run and two hits in the first inning, but allowed just one hit after that as he improved to 8-1. He ended up walking two and striking out six and lowered his earned run average to 1.50.

The Bulldogs took a 1-0 lead in the first when Nick Purdy doubled with two outs and Trey Porter followed with an RBI single.

The Bobcats answered with an unearned run in the second. With two outs, Ryan Roberts drew a walk and Jarrett Jenkins entered as a pinch-runner. Chad Guice followed with a single off the glove of Bulldog second baseman Michael Paul. The ball rolled under rightfielder Zach DeSoto’s glove, which allowed Jenkins to score.

The Bobcats went up 2-1 in the third. Zach Allen reached on an error and Ladd Rhodes followed with a single. Vito Perna walked to load the bases and Nick Ray’s sacrifice fly to left scored Allen.

JCJC added its final two runs in the fourth. Roberts led off with a double off the wall to right and was replaced by Jenkins. Guice sacrificed him to third. Graham Odom then tried to safety squeeze Jenkins home, but was called out on the bunt attempt when the ball hit him out of the box.

But Rhodes delivered an RBI single and Allen would later score on a passed ball.

Meanwhile, Pierce was on cruise control after the first. He retired 10 in a row at one point and set down the final five in order.

Rhodes doubled and singled twice to pace JCJC. Roberts added a double, while Guice and Chase Headrick singled.

Tyler Bray started and took the loss for the Bulldogs. He went 3 2/3 innings, gave up four runs (two earned), three hits, walked four and struck out three. Gene Genevay pitched 1/3 of an inning and gave up two hits. Daniel Wineski went the final two innings, allowed one hit, one walk and got a strikeout.

Purdy doubled for the Bulldogs, while Porter and J.C. Cassidy singled.

Bobcats 10, Bulldogs 1

McIlwain struck out six and walked five as he evened his season’s record at 4-4 with his first complete game of the year.

At the plate, Darion Hamilton drove in four runs and Perna had three hits.

Just like in game one, Gulf Coast scored first.

In the third inning, Hunter Frierson led off with a walk, took second on a groundout and scored on a single by Nick Boggs.

But the Bobcats responded with three runs in the bottom of the inning and were never headed.

Allen led off with a walk and Rhodes singled. Perna then delivered an RBI single and Nick Ray drilled a two-run double to right to make it 3-1.

The Bobcats expanded the lead to 7-1 in the fourth. Allen and Rhodes drew one-out walks and Perna followed with another run-scoring single to right. Ray then walked and Hamilton then drilled a two-run single to right. Headrick then singled another run home.

JCJC closed the scoring with three runs in the sixth.

Perna led off with a single and Ray drew a walk. Hamilton then hit a two-run double to the gap in right-center. Hamilton would later come home on an error.

Perna had three singles, while Hamilton doubled and singled. Ray added a double, while Rhodes and Headrick had singles.

Boggs, Purdy, Porter, DeSoto and Dieter Hamilton singled for the Bulldogs.

Purdy was the starter and loser. He went two-plus innings, gave up three runs, two hits, walked four and struck out one. Gavin Culpepper then went two innings, gave up four runs, four hits, walked three and struck out one. Timothy Maloney pitched one perfect inning and Chris Wright finished up the final inning, allowing three runs (two earned), two hits and a walk.

Sophomore Day

The Bobcats honored their 11 sophomore players and two sophomore managers between games.

The sophomore players are Chase Headrick, Andrew Pierce, Graham Odom, Jay Bell, Josh Palmer, Blake McIlwain, Darion Hamilton, Ladd Rhodes, Nick Ray, Ryan Waters and Ryan Roberts.

The sophomore managers are Jordan Burgess and Trent Walters.



Game 1

Jones County 4, Miss. Gulf Coast 1

Gulf Coast (18-19, 11-8)                 100 000 0 – 1 3 2

Jones County (30-13, 16-5)            011 200 x – 4 6 0

Tyler Bray, Gene Genevay (4), Daniel Wineski (5) and Nick Purdy, Anthony Izzio (6). Andrew Pierce and Ryan Roberts. WP-Pierce (8-1). LP-Bray. Gulf Coast hitters: Nick Purdy 2B; Trey Porter 1B; J.C. Cassidy 1B. JCJC hitters: Ladd Rhodes 2B, 2 1B; Ryan Roberts 2B; Chase Headrick 1B; Chad Guice 1B. T-2:05.


Game 2

Jones County 10, Miss. Gulf Coast 1

Gulf Coast (18-20, 11-9)                 100 000 0 – 1 5 1

Jones County (31-13, 17-5)            003 403 x – 10 7 1

Nick Purdy, Gavin Culpepper (3), Timothy Maloney (5), Chris Wright (6) and Dieter Hamilton. Blake McIlwain and Ryan Roberts. WP-McIlwain (4-4). LP-Purdy. Gulf Coast hitters: Nick Boggs 1B; Nick Purdy 1B; Trey Porter 1B; Zach DeSoto 1B; Dieter Hamilton 1B. JCJC hitters: Vito Perna 3 1B; Darion Hamilton 2B, 1B; Nick Ray 2B; Ladd Rhodes 1B; Chase Headrick 1B. T-2:06.


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