By David Wheeler/NEMS Daily Journal
MOOREVILLE – The Mooreville Troopers’ winning steak stood at 11 games.
The Tupelo Golden Wave winning streak was at 16.
Something had to give Saturday when the two Lee County teams got on the same baseball field.
On the strength of a big third inning, Tupelo upped its streak to 17 games in a row, getting past Mooreville 14-2.
“It was nice to have such a big inning, but we started off slow again,” Tupelo coach Gary Enis said, whose team put up 11 runs in the fourth inning Friday against Columbus. “Anytime you put that many runs up in an inning, that’s good.”
The two squads were locked in a rivalry-type battle at 0-0 through two innings. But in the top of the third, the Wave (19-1) broke through with five effective hits.
Mooreville pitching walked five and hit three batters in the frame. But with runners in scoring position, Dylan Vuncannon, Cody Shrewsbury, Ben Hudspeth, and William Goss did produce RBI hits that helped Tupelo plate its runs.
That was more than enough support for Tupelo starter Shrewsbury (3-0), whose five innings of work was his longest outing of the season.
“It really helped Shrewsbury to get that many runs, I think he was more relaxed,” Enis said of the Division 2-6A pitcher of the year last season. “He’s still not at full speed, but now that the weather’s warmer, we’re giving him some innings.”
Tupelo went on to add three runs in the fourth inning on RBI hits by Luke Davis and Vuncannon.
Meanwhile, Mooreville (16-5) was coming off a highly charged but key battle of unbeatens in 2-3A play against Winona Friday, a game the Troopers won 3-1 to jump into sole position of first place.
“We didn’t show up tonight,” Mooreville coach Jamie Russell said. “Tupelo is good.
“This wasn’t a division game, so we have to forget about it.”
Mooreville scored a solo run in the third inning on an RBI single by Tyler Moore. The Troopers then added a solo run in the fifth on a bases loaded walk.
“This was a little revenge for us because Mooreville swept us last year,” Enis said. “Mooreville is a quality team, and our seniors wanted this game tonight.”
Tupelo is back in action Monday in another non-division contest, this time at Pontotoc. Then the Wave close out their home schedule in 2-6A on Tuesday by hosting South Panola.
Mooreville turns around and hosts Winona on Tuesday.