Ole Brook Panthers win battle against West Jones
Acrid smoke drifted across Moyer Field Tuesday night, fillingnostrils with the remains of a smoldering trash bonfire adjacent toBrookhaven’s diamond. Members of the BHS baseball team went abouttheir business, cleaning up the field after winning a hard-fought6-5 battle with the West Jones Mustangs that required an extrainning to determine a victor.
Senior Gabe Wilson, the winning pitcher in 3 innings of relief,also delivered the decisive connection. With the bases loaded and 2batters retired, Wilson lashed a hard grounder at the West Jonesshortstop who bobbled the ball and allowed E.J. Henderson to scorefrom third base.
Wilson shared the team’s Latin motto. “We have a saying, ‘ParaBellum.’ It means, ‘Go To War.'”
Wilson explained. “We still have to keep fighting, no matter whathappens. I knew we would score a run, sooner or later.”
Wilson’s heroics began in the first inning when he doubled homeScottie Peavey who had beat out an infield roller. On the mound,Wilson replaced starter Houston Case in the top of the 6th and thePanthers trailing 5-4.
Wilson, a Meridian Community College signee who plays shortstop andpitches, gave up 3 hits in relief. He struck out 4 batters,including 3 in the top of the eighth as the Mustangs left 2 runnersstranded.
BHS boss Randy Spring was happy to see his team (6-5, 1-0) wintheir first Region 5-5A test of the season. “Gabe came in andslammed it shut on them. We kept playing hard when we gotbehind.”
Ole Brook tied the game at 5-5 in the bottom of the seventh.Stevens retired the first 2 batters before Peavey singled toright-center, collecting his third hit of the game. Wilson was hitby a pitch. Drew Jones delivered a clutch, RBI single to leftfield, gaining a deadlock.
In the bottom of the eighth, leadoff batter E.J. Henderson was hitby a Stevens pitch and quickly stole second base. Joel Patrick washit on the lower leg by a pitch while attempting a bunt. Peaveydrew an intentional walk to load the bases with 2 away. That setthe stage for Wilson.
The game started an hour early to help West Jones prepare fortesting today. The Mustangs (6-3-1, 0-1), coached by Joey Ward,will host Brookhaven Friday night.
On Saturday, the Panthers host a tripleheader. They play NatchezCathedral in the 11 a.m. opener, followed by Cathedral versusTylertown and BHS vs. Tylertown at 3 p.m.
“Drew Jones hit the ball well and had two RBIs for us,” saidSpring. “Houston Case pitched a great ballgame.
“It makes a difference with Scottie (Peavey) in the lineup,” Springnoted. “Few teams would walk him to pitch to Gabe.”
The Mustangs gained a 2-2 tie in the fourth on a 2-RBI double byDerek Bynum. BHS responded with Dillon Newell’s RBI double to theleft field fence, gaining a 3-2 lead. J.B. Perkins delivered anopposite field single and it was 4-2.
The Mustangs took a 5-4 lead in the fifth. Stevens lofted an RBIsingle over second base and Steven Billingsley smashed a 2-RBIdouble to the center field fence, making it 5-4.
Chase Ward started on the mound for West Jones and gave up 5 runson 10 hits. Case allowed 5 runs on 9 hits.
In the JV game, BHS posted a 9-5 win as Reid Jones pitched thevictory.