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.

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