Wildcats split with Eagles

JACKSON Pearl River split with Hinds in an MACJC South Division baseball doubleheader here Friday in Smith-Wills Stadium, falling 4-3 in a hard-fought eight-inning battle before routing the host Eagles 8-1 in the nightcap game via a three-hit mound effort by righthander Christian Talley, a University of Alabama transfer who prepped at Hancock County High.PRCC is now 21-13 overall and 6-8 in division play, while HCC is 24-8 and 8-5.The River eyes five more division doubleheaders before ending the regular season starting with Mississippi Gulf Coast (Wednesday in Poplarville), Jones County (Saturday, April 14 in Ellisville), Copiah-Lincoln (Saturday, April 21 in Poplarville), and East Central (Wednesday, April 25 in Decatur) before hosting Southwest Mississippi Saturday, April 28 in Wildcat Stadium.Hinds entered the twin bill off an incomplete division doubleheader with Jones where the Eagles were 5-2 winners in the first game before the second contest was postponed due to rain. No make-up date has been set for that rain-out.Friday game was moved from Hinds Raymond campus to nearby Smith-Wills due to wet field conditions.Pearl River opened the first contest with two runs in the first when Chase Toussaint of Petal High cracked a one-out single through short and Chase Lewallen of Sumrall High reached on a fielder choice with Toussaint sliding safely into second off an Eagle throwing error.Chad Livingston, a Southeastern Louisiana transfer who prepped at Slidell (La.) High, followed with a hard-hit, RBI double through the second-base gap before Matt Linton of East Central High sacrificed to center field for push Lewallen home. Livingston courtesy runner, DaVonte Linear of Wayne County High, was nailed at third off Linton sac fly for the final out.Hinds responded with a lead off single by Akiko Thompson before Tyler Akins was belted by a pitch by Wildcat starter Ryan Deemes out of Holy Cross High in Chalmette, La. Caleb Baucum reached on a fielder choice to place runners at first and third before Beau Wallace hit into a force out to end the inning.After the next two-and-a-half went scoreless, the Eagles tied it up in the bottom of the fourth. Chris Jones led off with a single to left field and Pierson Waring was hit by a pitch. The base runners moved to second and third off Ryno Martin-nez sacrifice, while Justin Smith singled-in Jones. Waring was tagged out in a rundown between second and third before Thompson cracked an up-the-middle base hit and tied it up when he scored off Daniel Gilbert base hit to right. After Akins walked to load the bases, Baucum grounded out to third.PRCC regained the lead in the top of the fifth when Ryan Best of Oak Grove High drew a one-out walk and Toussaint singled to right a fly-out later. Best scored when Lewallen reached on a throwing error to make it 3-2 before Eagle starter Alex Gunn Kd Lewallen for the final out.Hinds tied it up again in the bottom of the frame when Jones hit a one-out single, Waring was hit by a pitch, and Jones scored when Martin-nez reached on a fielder choice. Smith then hit into a double play to end the inning.Akins relieved Gunn to start the sixth and retired three straight River batters, while the Eagles loaded the bases in the bottom of the inning when Deemes gave up a lead-off single to Thompson before hitting back-to-back batters with pitches. That prompted his mound exit for sidewinder Bradley Rayborn of Purvis High who saw Baucum reach on a fielder choice before Wallace hit into a double play to end the inning.The seventh went scoreless to send things into an extra inning with reliever Akins retiring three straight Wildcats in the top of the eighth. In the bottom of the frame, Gilbert reached on a one-out error and moved to second off a wild pitch before Akins was intentionally walked. An out later, Wallace was hit by a pitch to load the bases and Jones followed with a game-winning, RBI single to right to end the game.Akins (3-2) picked up the win in his three innings of relief, giving up one hit and striking out four; while Gunn went five innings, gave up six hits, struck out three, and walked one.Rayborn (1-1) got the loss, giving up a hit, striking out two, walking one, and hitting two batters; while starter Deemes went five frames, give up seven hits, struck out three, walked one, and belted a whopping six Eagle batters with pitches.Livingston paced the Wildcats seven-hit effort with a double and a single (one RBI), while Braxton Lee of Picayune High and Toussaint had two base hits each. Krisjohn Wilkerson out of St. Stanislaus College in Bay St. Louis and Lewallen each singled, while Linton had an RBI.The Eagles finished with eight hits, led by Jones three singles (one RBI); while Thompson had two base hits and Baucum, Gilbert (one RBI), and Smith (one RBI) all singled. Martin-nez had one RBI.Each team committed two errors in the game.In the second game, Pearl River scored two in the first when Lewallen and Livingston cracked two-out singles and Linton followed with an RBI base hit to right field and Livingston scored off a passed ball. After Austin Carter of Sumrall High walked, Aaron Lee of Pearl River Central High popped to short for the final out.After Hinds went three up, three down in the bottom of the first frame, the Wildcats padded their lead in the top of the second when Braxton Lee smacked a two-out single to left, stole second, and scored off Toussaint up-the-middle base hit before Lewallen grounded to second for the final out.Again, Talley retired three straight in the bottom of the inning; while Livingston led off the top of the third with a mammoth home run bash over the right center field wall. Starter Nathan Aultman was relieved by John Gault at that point and he immediately saw Linton reach on one of the Eagles six errors in the game. After striking out Wilkerson, Aaron Lee singled, Carter grounded out to third, Best walked to load the corners, but Braxton Lee hit into a force out.In the bottom of the frame, lead off Waring was hit by a pitch, moved to second off Martin-nez ground out, then on to third off Smith line drive single to right. Thompson singled in Waring for Hinds only run of the game before Talley struck out Gilbert and Akins flew to right to end the inning.After a scoreless fourth and fifth, Pearl River unloaded with four in the sixth off reliever Hunter Duvic, who replaced Gault to start the fifth. Lead off Best walked, Braxton Lee singled to right, and Toussaint reached on a fielder choice before Lewallen cracked a two-run triple and wound up scoring a third run on the same play via a throwing error to third to make it 7-1.Andrew Gunn relieved Duvic at that point and he immediately gave up a line drive single to right to Livingston and Linton reached on a fielder choice with Livingston sliding safely into third off another Eagle throwing error. Wilkerson sacrificed Livingston home to make it 8-1 before Aaron Lee flew to right for the final out.After Talley retired three straight in the bottom of the inning, Andrew Gunn was relieved by Jake Chambliss to start the seventh. Chambliss faced only two batters, giving up a lead off single to Carter before retiring Best and Nathan Harrell took over the mound. Braxton Lee then flew out to left before Toussaint reached on an fielder choice and Carter was nailed at home for the final out.In the bottom of the frame, Jacob Thomas reached on a one-out error before Joseph Veasey hit into a double play to end the game.Talley (2-1) got the win in going the distance, giving up three hits, striking out four, walking two, and hitting a batter; while Eagle starter Aultman (5-2) got the loss. He pitched two innings, gave up six hits, struck out one, and walked one; while Gault relieved in the third and went two frames, giving up two hits, striking out one, and walking one. Butler relieved in the fifth going one-and-a-third, giving up three hits, striking out one and walking one; Andrew Gunn in the sixth, going two-thirds of an inning, giving up a hit; Chambliss faced two batters in the seventh, giving up a hit; while Harrell got the final two Wildcat outs in the final inning.Pearl River committed one error in the contest.Lewallen paced the Wildcats 13-hit attack with a triple and three singles (four RBIs), while Livingston homered and had two base hits (one RBI). Braxton Lee and Linton (one RBI) had two singles each, while Carter and Aaron Lee both had base hits. Wilkerson had an RBI for Pearl River.Smith had two singles for the Eagles, while Thompson had an RBI base hit.Pearl River and Hinds split in an earlier division doubleheader played March 14 in Poplarville. PRCC won the first game 1-0, while HCC won the nightcap match up 6-3.The Wildcats return to action when they host to division rival Gulf Coast Wednesday (4 p.m. doubleheader) in Poplarville before traveling to Jones in Ellisville Saturday, April 14, for a 2 p.m. twin bill.

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