All posts by tbradenbishop

Jaguar talent bests Tupelo baseball

TUPELO – DeSoto Central came, they saw Tupelo and Madison Central Saturday, and they won.

The Clarion Ledgers’ No. 2 team in the state was able to cruise through a doubleheader at Golden Wave field, dispatching the Wave 7-0, and get past Madison Central 11-3.

“We had just two bad innings,” Tupelo head coach Gary Enis said. “It was good to play two playoff teams this weekend, and see how we match up.”

The Tupelo offense had to match up against DeSoto starter and Mississippi State signee Keegan James threw five innings against the Wave, limiting the home team to just two singles by Ty Wheeler and Carter Clayton.

DeSoto scored all of its runs in just two innings, beginning in the second. Ole Miss signee Kyle Watson led off with a double, as the visitors used two walks, a hit batter, a single, and a wild pitch to score four runs.

In the fourth inning, DeSoto needed only three hits to score three runs. Brant Blaylock led off with a double and scored on MSU signee Autsin Riley’s single. Ole Miss signee Clay Casey followed with a towering home run to left for all the runs DeSoto would need.

“Not only did they have good hitters, they threw good pitchers against us,” Enis said. “We had some good at bats, we swung too early at times, but this was part of a learning experience.”

Ole Miss signee Dallas Woolfork closed out the Wave in the seventh inning, with Tupelo facing two of DeSoto’s top three pitchers. Tupelo did threaten in the second inning as Luke Weeden walked, and Wheeler hit his hit. In the fourth, Hudson Roy walked and Clayton got his hit for Tupelo’s two biggest threats.

Sophomore Jason Garrett pitched the first four innings for the Wave, and junior Will Buse threw the final three frames.

In the first contest of the day, DeSoto stung Madison Central for eight runs in the bottom of the first. DeSoto out hit Madison Central 10-4.

Next up for Tupelo is its last scheduled home game against Southaven Tuesday.  It will senior-night for the Wave. Tupelo is scheduled to play at Belmont Friday, but that date is the middle of the play in round of the playoffs, and Belmont can finish no better than second place in 1-3A. Enis indicates Tupelo will look to play another division winner, perhaps Louisville, over the weekend.

The 2-6A champ, Tupelo will begin its playoffs May 1 against the winner of the Madison Central-Horn Lake series.

Thanks to David Wheeler for the post. Read his specials in the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal and follow him on Twitter at @OldManDavid.

6A Rival Jags sweep Golden Wave

TUPELO – The spirit of the Tupelo Golden Wave-Madison Central Jaguars rivalry was basically at full speed Friday in a rare regular season baseball game between the schools.
Round 2 in 2014 goes to Madison Central.

In front of a nice home crowd on the last weekend prior to the post-season, Madison Central was the team that survived a back-and-forth affair for an 8-7 victory.

“This is part of the reason we scheduled them, to get that playoff intensity,” Tupelo head coach Gary Enis said. “We can learn from our mistakes.”

Both the Wave (18-7) and the Jaguars (11-10) entered the contest with a spot in the playoffs ensured, and a potential matchup down the line. And Saturday was a good playoff prequel.
Central edged it’s way to an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning after a leadoff double by Blake Morton, followed by a bunt and a sacrifice fly. That first inning double was the first of five two-baggers for the Jaguars.

After getting runners in scoring position the first two innings, the Wave exploded onto the scoreboard in the third. With one out, two walks and a hit loaded the bases, bringing catcher William Ikerd to the plate. The junior connected on a pitch, sending the ball over the left field wall for a grand slam and a 4-1 Tupelo lead. This was Ikerd’s second home run of the season.

But it was not the last of the offensive fireworks for this contest. Madison Central responded with three runs in the fourth, initially loading the bases with no outs. Two singles and a fielder’s choice plated the runs to tie the game at 4-4.

Tupelo forged back ahead in the bottom of the fourth. Woody Goss lead off with a single, later scoring on a Hudson Roy double. Madison Central made its decisive move in the fifth. The Jaguars had five hits in the frame, including three doubles, that scored four as the visitors grabbed an 8-5 advantage.

The Wave dented that margin in the fifth. Tupelo loaded the bases with one out, but only scored one on a Goss bunt. Tupelo also scored once in its last at bat on a sacrifice fly by Jason Garrett, and had the tying run on third when the game ended.

Sophomore Drew Hurst was the starter for this contest, pitching into the fourth inning. Senior Luke Weeden came on in the fourth after two batters, and senior Ty Wheeler came on in the fifth after two batters. Wheeler also had three hits on the evening.

“We had better contact hitting throughout the lineup, but we didn’t get the clutch hits,” Enis said. “We’re going to come out Saturday and watch two good teams battle, then we’re going to out and play.”

Good matchups of Class 6A team continue Saturday/today at Golden Wave Field as Madison Central will face the Clarion Ledger No. 2 team in the state – DeSoto Central – at noon. Tupelo will then face DeSoto Central at approximately 3 p.m.

This might not be the final matchup between Tupelo and Madison Central. The Jaguars will face Horn Lake in the play-in round next weekend, with the winner facing the Wave in the first round of the playoffs. Madison Central won a March contest against Tupelo 6-4.

Thanks to David Wheeler for the post. Read his specials in the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal and follow him on Twitter at @OldManDavid.

BREAKING: Board officially approves Tupelo High School blue turf

It’s official. Blue is the new Golden Wave.

blue turf

Tupelo Public School District’s Board has officially approved summer construction to replace and resurface the Tupelo High School track and football field.

“Throughout the process, Coach (Trent) Hammond and I have had the opportunity to speak with our community about being involved in this, and we have had great responses,” said first-year THS athletic director Andy Schoggin. “We’ve set a target goal for sponsorships and we are now at 80% of that goal.”

According to Schoggin at today’s TPSD Work Session, track and field will host regionals and demolition will begin shortly after Saturday, April 26th. It is expected to be completed “late July or early August” in anticipation of Tupelo’s first home football game against Center Hill Friday, August 22nd. Tupelo will open the 2014 season at Lafayette County, which also has artificial turf, Friday, August, 15th

“Our timeline is really urgent,” said Schoggin.

Hellas Construction out of Austin, Texas will be fully responsible for the demolition and construction of the entire project. According to Assistant Superintendent Dr. Matthew Dillon, Hellas provided the lowest and best bid which was a little less than $1.3 million. Bids were submitted March 27th.

Special thanks to http://www.hellasconstruction.com.

Their impressive reputation is known all over the county. From their website profile

Hellas is a nationwide sports contractor with a strong reputation for delivering premium-quality sports construction projects across the United States. In addition, Hellas has the ability to custom-manufacture and install proprietary brands of synthetic surfaces for sports fields, running tracks, and tennis courts, by controlling all related operations. In addition to a headquarters in Austin, Texas, Hellas operates several US-based offices.
Clients include the NFL Experience, AT&T Stadium, Baylor University, University of California, Berkeley, Idaho State University, the Alamodome, Northern Arizona University, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, University of San Diego, University of Georgia and various other prominent high schools, collegiate institutions and stadiums.

In late 2013, Tupelo was granted approval from Boise State University to use their patented turf. Since 2009, Rachael Bickerton, BSU’s director of trademark licensing and enforcement at Boise State, has issued approximately 30 non-green playing surfaces – some retroactivity, because they were installed before she came on the job. Licenses are free. Of the licenses issues, 17 have been to elementary or high schools for blue or navy fields. This information is credited Chadd Cripe at the Bronco Beat of the Idaho Statesman.

The new track and football field will also serves purposes for band, soccer, various year-round practices, and third-party involvement such as the Southeast Selection Mississippi Combine run by Scott Robertson of FoxSports and Scout.com.

Special thanks to Chris Kieffer, Education Reporter at the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal in Tupelo for contributing immensely to this post. Follow him at @chriskieffer.

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Review, Preview, and Blankets of the Week (April 13)

BASEBALL:  THS (17-5, 5-2) won at South Panola but dropped their second division game to Grenada at home Friday. The Golden Wave swept IAHS and Belmont yesterday. Big week ahead. Tupelo can clinch Division 2-6A with a win at Hernando tomorrow or at home Tuesday. They’ll host Madison Central Friday and No. 1 DeSoto Central Saturday. All games will stream LIVE at www.goldenwaveathletics.com.

FAST-PITCH SOFTBALL: THS (7-15, 0-4) lost games to Grenada and Mooreville last week. They’ll travel to Tish County Tuesday, host South Panola Thursday, and travel to Fulton Saturday.

TENNIS: THS (11-3, 3-0) defeated Olive Branch in the 1st Round of 6A playoffs Tuesday. They’ll host Clinton next Tuesday, April 22nd at Rob Leake Park at 4 p.m. THS also the hosted individual division tournament last Friday and advanced players to state competition in every court except girls singles.

GOLF: THS hosted a multiple team scramble at TCC last Thursday. The boys placed 1st while the girls took 2nd. Tupelo will participate in the Region Tournament Wednesday at Tupelo Country Club.

ARCHERY: THS will travel to Jackson Wednesday to compete in the state competition at the Kirk Fordice Equine Center. Shooting time are at 3 and 4 p.m. Scores for all teams and individuals can be found at www.mdwfp.com/aims.

TRACK: Track and field will host division Tuesday and Thursday. Region will take place at THS Saturday, April 26th.

 

BLANKETS OF THE WEEK:

  • Seniors Carter Clayton, Luke Weeden, and Ty Wheeler all pitched complete game wins last week.
  • Senior Kyle Holliman is a tennis team leader who leads by example and does any and everything for his team. Kyle won his 1st Round match against OB, 6-1, 6-0, with partner Sarah Lambert Hollingsworth. Senior Robert Thompson won his match against OB, 6-0, 6-1, with partner Joel Baldwin. He also won against South Panola and Hernando to win the Mixed Doubles district championship with partner Emily Carter.
  • Junior Kirk Reeder and freshman Michaela Bryan recognized for their outstanding play in last week’s THS scramble at TCC. 

As always, follow @tbradenbishop or @TupeloHigh for updates and pertinent information regarding all Tupelo Golden Wave athletics. themblankets.com is also on Facebook. Be sure to Like us.

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Baseball rights ship quickly in Saturday double-header

TUPELO – In a pair of non-division home games Saturday, Tupelo bats were a bit on the silent side. But The Silencer had the situation under control.

Senior Ty Wheeler was four outs from a perfect game, but pitched a complete seven innings to silence the Belmont Cardinals 1-0. And senior Luke Weeden made the most of his first start of the season, also throwing seven innings to help defeat the Itawamba AHS Indians 2-0.

“Those seniors had to step up, and they did,” Tupelo head coach Gary Enis said. “A win is a win, and we’ll take them. The main thing was to get momentum for Monday and Tuesday.”

Enis was pointing toward the first of the coming week, where the Wave are scheduled to be at Hernando Monday, then host Hernando Tuesday. Tupelo and Hernando are tied for first place in Division 2-6A play with 5-2 marks, and if Tupelo wins one of he two games, the Wave win the division.

But the matter at hand Saturday included Belmont, which is in second place in Division 1-3A. Despite having only one inning in the books for the 2014 season, Wheeler was throwing to the plate the entire game. The senior was a pitch away from going into the seventh inning with a chance for a perfect game before No. 9 hitter Ryan Gray for Belmont blooped a single over third base to break up the bid for perfection.

Jon Mark Payne followed with a double, then Luke Alexander was intentionally walked. But Wheeler induced a pop to Carson Roberts at second base to get out of the bases loaded situation.

Tupelo, now 17-5, got its only run in the bottom of the third. The Wave had three straight singles, beginning with Hudson Roy and Carter Clayton. Michael Ray then got the RBI hit, all the offense Tupelo would need.

With a noon starting time, the Tupelo-Itawamba contest was a tight affair. In the second inning, a Weeden walk eventually set up a Roberts run-scoring hit. In the third frame, Roy and Clayton got hits, Ray walked, then William Ikerd drew a bases-loaded walk for a two-run lead.

In the meantime, Weeden scattered eight hits to the Class 4A Indians. The Tupelo defense contributed to the effort, highlighted by a Clayton diving stab of a hard-hit grounder to third that the senior turned into a force out in the top of the third. And in the fifth, left fielder Matthew Miley made a nice running catch in the corner to end the inning.

Hernando now is the prime concern for Tupelo. The division winner gets a bye in the playoffs, avoiding the playin round that begins April 25. Also, rain is in the forecast for Monday.

“We’ll tarp our field Sunday, but Hernando does not have a tarp,” Enis said. “But we still have to prepare for Monday. It is time for everyone on the team to step up and get the job done.”

If the games stay as scheduled, Roy should pitch Monday. The senior has not pitched since March 28. Clayton threw in a complete game win over South Panola Thursday, and sophomores Drew Hurst and Jason Garrett threw in a Friday loss to Grenada. Enis indicates that whoever is feeling the best Tuesday between the three would get the start.

Also on the horizon, Tupelo will host Madison Central Friday and the top-ranked team in the state DeSoto Central Saturday.

Thanks to David Wheeler for the post. Read his specials in the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal and follow him on Twitter at @OldManDavid.

Review, Preview, and Blankets of the Week (April 6)

BASEBALL:  THS (14-4, 4-1) dropped two spots to No. 12 in last week’s Clarion-Ledger poll at No. 10. The Golden Wave posted wins over Hernando, New Albany, and Saltillo. Last Friday’s division game at Hernando was postponed to Monday, April 14th. This week, they travel to South Panola Tuesday, host Greanda Friday, and IAHS and Belmont Saturday. All games will stream LIVE at www.goldenwaveathletics.com.

FAST-PITCH SOFTBALL: THS (7-13, 0-3) defeated Vardaman in the Golden Wave Tournament but had loses to Saltillo, Grenada, and Baldwyn. Lady Wave softball will host Grenada Tuesday, travel to Mooreville Thursday, and host Myrtle Friday.

TENNIS: THS (10-3, 3-0) had a successful first THS Tennis Tournament. Another loss to Oxford was overshadowed with wins over Pontotoc, New Albany, and Alcorn Central. They’ll now host 1st Round Thursday against an opponent that will be determined Monday afternoon.

GOLF: THS had a remarkable showing at Jackson’s Gator Invitational. They placed 1st over 20+ schools from three states. Golf will travel to Oxford tomorrow and hosts a number of area teams at TCC Thursday.

ARCHERY: THS won 6A North Half last week. They’ll host South Pontotoc and Guntown tomorrow at 5:30.

TRACK: Track and field boys placed 1st at yesterday’s Daily Journal Relays. Girls came in 2nd after Pontotoc. THS will travel to Meridian Saturday to compete in the East Mississippi Invitational.

POWERLIFTING: THS had a successful trip to Jackson’s state meet yesterday. Otis Wilson (6A, 165 lbs) took 1st place, Danielle Sharp (Class III, 132 lbs) capture 2nd, and Nijah Fields got 4th (97 lbs).

 

BLANKETS OF THE WEEK:

  • Senior Carter Clayton, sophomore Drew Hurst, and sophomore Jason Garrett all picked up complete game wins against Hernando, New Albany, and Saltillo.
  • Senior Reagan Aldridge, a Holmes CC commit, picked up her second win of the season against Vardaman. Freshman Lauren Knight had the game-winning hit against Vardaman. The win snapped a six-game losing streak.
  • Sophomore Andrew Hildenbrand won all three matches 6-0, 6-0; 6-2, 6-1; 6-4, 3-6, 1-0 (singles, doubles) at this weekend’s tournament. Freshman Hogan Harrington won all four of his matches 7-6, 4-6, 1-0; 6-1, 6-1; 6-1, 6-3; 6-4, 3-6, 1-0. (doubles, mixed doubles)
  • Seniors Hayden Buckley and Daniel Purnell posted 76, 77 and 76, 79 during their team’s 1st place victory at the Gator Invitational.
  • Track boys: 4 x 800 relay (Darnell Collier, Max Lawson, Andrew White, and Mako Dijkwell), 4 x 200 relay (Quinton Lauderdale, Reed Bigham, Rodney McIntosh, and Jayland Dillard), shotput (Aliajawon Johnson), long jump (Antonio Clifton), and 400 dash and 4 x 400 relay (Alex Cayson).
  • Track girls: 100 hurdles and 4 x 100 relay (Charde Hannah), 100 dash and 4 x 100 relay (Reagan Cook), 300 hurdles (Blakely Lollar), long jump (Breanna Jernigan), high jump (Eliza Bigham), triple jump (Sarah Ewing).
  • Senior Otis Wilson (6A, 165 lbs) took 1st place in his powerlifting weight class at yesterday’s state meet. Danielle Sharp (Class III, 132 lbs) capture 2nd in hers.

 

As always, follow @tbradenbishop or @TupeloHigh for updates and pertinent information regarding all Tupelo Golden Wave athletics. themblankets.com is also on Facebook. Be sure to Like us.

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Tupelo takes two from New Albany and Saltillo

TUPELO – The Tupelo Golden Wave baseball team had pair of Saturday games, and sophomore pitching helped to make the weekend schedule successful.

In an afternoon matchup, the Wave scratched out a 6-2 victory over the New Albany Bulldogs. While the Tupelo offense could manage only five hits, pitcher Drew Hurst pitched a complete game, striking out seven while allowing just five hits.

“We sort of jumped on New Albany early, and again Hurst threw strikes,” Tupelo head coach Gary Enis said. “And Woody Goss had a good squeeze later in the game.”

In the first inning, two hit batters, an error, and a sacrifice fly from Michael Ray helped Tupelo score two. And a Luke Weeden single plated the third run for a 3-0 lead. The Wave then padded that margin in the fourth inning as Chase Cernigliaro reached on an error, Woody Goss singled, and a run scored on a Hudson Roy sac fly.

New Albany responded in the top of the fifth, scoring two on a Jake McDonald double. Tupelo covered that by playing small ball in the bottom of the inning. With the bases loaded, a Goss bunt scored one, followed by a Matthew Miley RBI single. Tupelo bunted three times in the inning.

SALTILLO – In the Wave’s second game of the day, the Tupelo offense supported the four-hit pitching of Jason Garrett for a 7-3 victory over the Saltillo Tigers as the Wave improved to 14-4.

“We had good, clutch hitting, and Jason kept us in the game,” Enis said. “I’m real pleased with our sophomore pitching, they’ve been really productive lately.”

Tupelo got on the scoreboard in the top of the third with RBI hits by Ray and  Weeden. Three Tupelo errors helped Saltillo grab a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the inning.

Not deterred, the Wave retook the lead in the fourth at 4-3 on a Cernigliaro RBI double and a Roy RBI single. Tupelo added a solo run in the fifth helped by two Saltillo errors. Then in the seventh, Cernigliaro iced the win with a two-run hit.

Tupelo returns to Division 2-6A play Tuesday with a road game at South Panola, then host Grenada Friday. Also of note, the road game at Hernando that was rained out Friday has been rescheduled for Monday April 14.

“The ball is in our court, and we have to answer the challenge,” said Enis, whose Wave are currently in first place in the division with a 4-1 mark. “I know that we need to beat Grenada and Hernando right now to win the division.”

Division winners get a bye to open the playoffs.

Thanks to David Wheeler for the post. Read his specials in the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal and follow him on Twitter at @OldManDavid.

Review, Preview, and Blankets of the Week (March 30)

BASEBALL:  THS (11-4, 3-1) entered this week’s Clarion-Ledger poll at No. 10. They posted wins over Grenada and Ridgeland but lost their first division game to Grenada Thursday and a non division contest to Madison Central Saturday. Tupelo will host Hernando Tuesday, travel to HHS Friday, host New Albany Saturday at 1 and travel to Saltillo Saturday at 4 p.m. All games this week will stream LIVE at www.goldenwaveathletics.com.

FAST-PITCH SOFTBALL: THS (6-11, 0-2) lost to New Hope, South Panola, and Mooreville last week. They’ll travel to Grenada tomorrow, host Baldwyn Friday, and host the Golden Wave Tournament Saturday at THS.

TENNIS: THS (7-2, 3-0) posted wins over Hernando, Madison Central (2013 6A runner-up) and St. Andrew’s (2013 3A champs) this week. Their only loss came to Newton County in the NC Tournament Saturday. JV will travel to Oxford tomorrow and varsity will host the THS Tennis Tournament at Rob Leake Park Friday and Saturday.

GOLF: THS notched two wins last week at Natchez Trace, Tupelo CC, and Old Waverly in the Tournament of Champions. The boys will participate in the Gator Invitational in Jackson Tuesday and Wednesday, and against Baldwyn at TCC Thursday.

ARCHERY: THS defeated Pine Grove and Ripley last Monday. They’ll travel to Coffeville Tuesday and Wednesday to qualify for North Half.

TRACK: Track and field boys placed 1st at Meridian’s Wildcat Invitational yesterday, girls posted 3rd. Both will host the Daily Journal Relays Saturday at THS.

SHOWCHOIR: Synergy won Grand Champions at the Fame competition in Brandon, Missouri yesterday. With the win, the group advances to Nationals.

 

BLANKETS OF THE WEEK:

  • 8th grader Sebastian Rios went 3-0 this weekend with wins against NWR’s Cody Wolf, 6-0, 6-0, MC’s Brighton Lowther, 6-3, 6-3 and St. Andrews’ Darian Raucher 6-0, 6-0.
  • Another 8th grader, Jessie Nabors, went 3-0 this weekend with wins against NWR’s Lana Taylor 6-3, 6-3, MC’s Laura Terry/Maggie Turnbull 6-1, 6-4 and St. Andrews’ Meg Case 7-5, 6-3. Jessie’s partner in the win against MC was Megan Ware.
  • Junior Miles Johnson shot a 78 at Old Waverly’s Tournament of Champions and also medaled against New Albany and Amory.
  • Showchoir’s Adam Ward and Molly Homan get noticed for this weekend’s championship competition. Adam shows great leadership among his peers. He using creativity to enhance and encourage everyone. Molly uses positivity to bring others together and inspire hope and a sense of community to those around her. She performs at the highest level no matter at rehearsal or in front of an audience.

 

As always, follow @tbradenbishop or @TupeloHigh for updates and pertinent information regarding all Tupelo Golden Wave athletics. themblankets.com is also on Facebook. Be sure to Like us.

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Tupelo baseball goes 1-1 in Jackson

The Tupelo Golden Wave baseball team ventured outside of the Northeast corner of the state for a pair games in the Jackson area Saturday, only coming away with a split, including a 6-4 loss Madison Central.

The Jaguars (6-7) were aggressive with their bats early, scoring in the first two innings to take a 3-0 lead. A single, a bunt, and an error set up a sacrifice fly for Central’s first run in the first. A double, two singles, and an error helped the Jaguars plate two more in the second.

Tupelo (11-4) bats finally woke up in the top of the fourth. Luke Weeden reached on an error, and Ty Wheeler singled, and William Ikerd singled to score Weeden. Later, pinch runner Tucker Whittenton scored on a Jason Garrett sac fly to pull the Wave within 3-2. Scoring went back and forth from this point.

Madison Central scored three in the fifth. Tupelo tried to respond with a two-run single by Woody Goss in the sixth.

“It all evened out in the end,” said Tupelo head coach Gary Enis of the Wave’s split for the day. “We learned enough today about the team to help, and we have a big week coming up. We had a fine performance from our offense against Ridgeland, and Jason Garrett pitched a fine game.

Tupelo did rebound in its second game of the day, downing the Class 5A Ridgeland Titans 9-2. The Wave offense punched out 12 hits, with Carter Clayton collecting three of them. And Garrett threw seven innings, scattering five hits.

Tupelo scored at least one run in every inning but the fourth, beginning with a two-run double by Ikerd in the first. Mickey Sesin scored on a double steal in the second, and Reed Taylor crossed the plate on an error off the bat of Wheeler in the third for a 4-0 lead.

In the fifth, Weeden tripled and scored on a Chase Cernigliaro hit. Michael Ray had a two-run triple, then scored on an Ikerd sac fly in the sixth. And in the seventh, Weeden doubled and scored on a Garrett ground out. Ridgeland (4-9) scored two in the bottom of the seventh.

“This is going to be the biggest week of the season for us,” said Enis, whose Wave are tied for first in Division 2-6A with Hernando, which they host Tuesday and travel to play Friday. “Some guys are going to have to step up.”

With both teams at 3-1 in the division, Tupelo will host Hernando (10-8) at 6 p.m. Tuesday. After traveling to Hernando Friday, Tupelo will host New Albany at 1 p.m. and play at Saltillo at 6 p.m. Saturday.

Thanks to David Wheeler for the post. Read his specials in the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal and follow him on Twitter at @OldManDavid.

Tupelo sees Madison for the first time since 2011

Madison Central!

Not much else need be said when the Tupelo Golden Wave and the Madison Central Jaguars are pitted against each other in sports. That certainly applies to baseball, where Tupelo-Madison Central matchups have produced some memorable series.

But how about the regular season?

As a player and a coach, Gary Enis can not remember Madison Central on the regular season schedule for Tupelo. Until Saturday, when the Wave travel to the Jackson area for a pair of games that includes a noon pairing against the Jaguars. “It’s become a good rivalry,” said Enis, the Tupelo head coach. “It will be good to see how we match up with them.”

“I’m glad we’re playing them,” Tupelo senior Luke Weeden said. “This way we won’t be surprised when we play them in the playoffs.”

Tupelo, which was ranked No. 10 in the state this week by the Clarion Ledger, will be entering Saturday’s game off a disappointing 6-5 loss in eight innings Thursday to Divison 2-6A foe Grenada. Tupelo, now 10-3 overall, fell to 3-1 in division play, but is still in first place in league play. Within the timeframe of Thursday’s Grenada game, and Tuesday’s Hernando game, the Tupelo pitching staff might be stressed to varying degrees Saturday. Hudson Roy pitched Thursday. Luke Weeden pitched Thursday and Tuesday. And Carter Clayton should pitch Tuesday.

Who will pitch Saturday?

Sophomores Drew Hurst and Jason Garrett seem likely for Tupelo’s two games Saturday. Senior Ty Wheeler could be in the mix, as could juniors Garrett Hill or Graham Taylor.

“We’ve been fortunate that most of guys have pitched complete games,” Enis said. “We’re going to have to have some guys step up. We don’t have an idea who will start the two games Saturday.”

The last time Tupelo and Madison Central (5-6) matched up in baseball was 2011 in the semifinals of the Class 6A playoffs. That was a series Tupelo won in three games, advancing the Wave to the  championship series against Petal.

“Madison Central is a big rival of ours in 6A,” said senior Michael Ray, who played against the Jaguars in November in the 6A football playoffs. We get our bats going, it would be a big victory for us. Plus we always seem to play better against them.

“I think the Madison Central game on all our players minds is Game 3 from 2011 when William Goss threw out a runner at the plate to end the game,” said Enis, a game Tupelo won 5-4, and the current Wave seniors were only freshmen at the time.

“It is good to get a series going with Madison Central.”

The last weekend of the regular season, Madison Central will visit Tupelo for an April 18 game versus the Wave. Then on April 19, Madison Central stays in Tupelo, with the Wave and Jaguars each playing the No. 1 team in the state DeSoto Central.

Not to overlook the back end of the Wave’s Saturday doubleheader in the Jackson area. After the Madison Central noon contest, Tupelo will play Class 5 Ridgeland at 4 p.m. Ridgeland (4-7) won the 2011 5A state championship. Then to complete this four game test over six days, the Wave will host Hernando (9-7, 2-1) Tuesday at 6 p.m.

Thanks to David Wheeler for the post. Read his specials in the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal and follow him on Twitter at @OldManDavid.