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Cobras rally by St. John

GULFPORT – Through five innings, Wesson and St. John played to astandstill in game one of their best-of-three Class 2A stateplayoff series on Thursday.

The Cobras exploded for five runs in the sixth inning to beatSt. John 6-1 at the Joe Sam Owen Baseball Complex.

Wesson (17-7) goes for a series sweep today at 6 p.m. The Eagleshope to force a third and deciding game on Saturday.

“Getting that first win was huge,” Wesson coach Phillip Knightsaid. “It puts us in the driver’s seat. If we concentrate and playwell, we will have a shot to win.”

The Cobras took advantage of two St. John errors in the sixthinning to break a 1-1 tie.

Peyton Warren started things with a single. He later scored onan Eagles outfield error after Justin Smith singled. RussellRobinson’s two-run single capped the Cobras’ scoring. Justin Smith,who led Wesson with four hits, was glad to get a crucial road winin the state playoffs.

“That five-run inning gave us confidence,” Justin Smith said.”We were motivated to play better defense.”

St. John coach Joe Sam Owen didn’t make any excuses for theEagles (14-11). The Eagles won the Division 8-2A championship.

“We made crucial errors,” Owen said. “We had a chance to turn adouble play in that inning. Wesson scored four runs off our errors.I guess that what happens when you have a young team. We haveexperience, but the players are still young.”

A St. John error led to Wesson taking a 1-0 second inninglead.

Peyton Warren reached second base after Jason Vitosky dropped afly ball in centerfield. Justin Smith’s RBI single gave the Cobrasa 1-0 lead.

The Eagles tied the game at 1-all in the fourth inning. PhilipPearson hit a bunt single, reached second on a passed ball andscored on Paul Roberts’ double.

Joseph Langham (5-2) posted the win with two strikeouts and nowalks. Paul Roberts absorbed the loss. Also seeing action was JoshWilliams in the sixth inning.

Adding support to the Wesson win with two singles was RyanWilliams. Hitting safely were Chris Peets and Peyton Warren.