McComb Tigers bash Ole Brook in marathon struggle

Published 5:00 am Tuesday, April 10, 2007

A mini-marathon took place Monday night on Moyer Field asBrookhaven welcomed McComb in the regular-season finale. It took 3hours, 25 minutes, but the Tigers gained a measure of revenge witha 20-10 Division 6-4A doubling of the Panthers in 7 innings.

Ole Brook had smashed McComb 18-4 Saturday at McComb’s RotaryField.

With the win, McComb improves to 13-12 overall and 6-6 in thedivision for a fourth-place finish. Brookhaven claims the No. 3spot and falls to 19-9 and 8-4.

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Both teams, along with Terry and Lawrence County, open play inthe Division 6-4A tournament Thursday at Terry. Runner-up LawrenceCounty tackles Brookhaven in the first game. Regular season titlistTerry battles McComb in the nightcap. Game times will be announcedWednesday.

The double-elimination tournament continues Friday andSaturday.

McComb 20, Brookhaven 10

After a scoreless first inning, both teams got their batsworking. The scoring barrage nearly burned out several light bulbsin the Moyer Field scoreboard. The teams combined for 30 runs, 24hits and 10 errors.

It would be the Panthers’ miscues that would cost them animportant game, heading into the district tournament.

“We did not make the plays, when we needed to,” said Ole Brookhead coach Randy Spring. “The errors that we made in the third,gave them the momentum they needed.”

With the game deadlocked at 1-1 in the top of the third, McCombwent to work. L.E. Carter singled. Two batters later, AlonzoHarris’ single scored Carter.

Then disaster stuck for Ole Brook. The Panthers committed 3consecutive errors. McComb took charge by scoring 4 unearned runsas Harris, Dontrell Sargent and Bradley Brock crossed home plate inthe inning, claiming a 5-1 advantage they would neverrelinquish.

Ole Brook cut the deficit to a single run, 5-4 in the bottomhalf of the third. Bud Britt reached on a walk. Two batters later,catcher Mitch Pappas and Nick Helmstetter reached on walks to loadthe bases. Cody Ratcliff singled to score Britt. Designated hitterTaylor Newman walked to score Pappas. Elliot Warren walked to scoreHelmstetter.

That would be as close as the Panthers would get.

McComb, coached by Brady Jones, would erupt for 5 runs in thefourth, 1 in the fifth and 9 in the seventh.

Ole Brook plated 3 runs in the fifth, 1 in the sixth and 2 inthe seventh.

Harris battled all night long to get the win. He pitched 7innings, allowing 10 earned runs on 9 hits. The senior issued 9bases on balls, striking out 9; all while throwing 184 pitches. Heaided his cause at the plate with 3 singles, 3 runs scored and 3RBIs.

The Panthers used 5 different hurlers during the game. StarterCole Newell took the loss in 2 1/3 innings, allowing 5 unearnedruns on 6 hits. He had no walks and 1 strikeout. Helmstetter,Britt, Josh Coone and Brandon Foster each made a reliefappearance.

“We struggled tonight,” added Spring, who is in his eighth yearat BHS.

Newman led Brookhaven with a single, a double, 2 runs scored and3 RBIs. Pappas and Warren had 2 RBIs apiece. Paxton King and BudBritt each had 2 singles.