The Eagles improved to 4-1-1 overall by defeating the John F. Kennedy Hornets 8-4 in Region 3-2A baseball action. The Hornets fell to 1-3 with a 1-2 mark in the region.
West Bolivar head coach Milton Barnes said the Eagles have gotten better at the plate with each game.
“Overall, the hitting is better,” Barnes said. “Our fielding has been pretty good and our pitching is stable. With us not having many games, we’ve spent a lot of time in the batting cage and that’s helped us.”
The Eagles started off slow as a couple of errors and a few base running mistakes gave the Hornets some key opportunities to jump out to an early lead. With the score tied 1-1, JFK made West Bolivar pay for its mistakes. When C.J. Gardner struck out with two runners on base, West Bolivar’s catcher dropped the ball. Gardner ran to first and was able to reach base safely as the throw to first went into the outfield. On the play, two more errors were committed and David Hutman, Xavier Roberts and Gardner scored to make the score 4-1.
The Eagles battled back as the offense was able to muster up seven runs over the next five innings.
West Bolivar starting pitcher Maurice Matheny ended up going the distance for the Eagles. Matheny was able to pitch five shutout innings after giving up four runs in the first two.
“We played excellent defense, but we couldn’t get runners in when we got them on base,” Hornets head coach Ken Howard said. “Their pitchers picked us of three of four times, and we stranded too many base runners.”
Tyerrique Gaitors tagged a triple and drove in two runs to lead the Eagles at the plate, followed by Kylan Johnson, Jamarcus Usry and Lamarcus Phillips with a hit each.
For JFK, Gardner scored twice for the Hornets. Todd Brace suffered the tough luck loss on the mound as he went all seven innings.
JFK will return to the baseball diamond today to play West Tallahatchie in Webb at 4 p.m., while West Bolivar is scheduled to play Ray Brooks Friday in Benoit.