The idea was for the state’s high school baseball semifinalists to play three games in three days.
Mother Nature had other ideas.
Five Game 2s scheduled for Friday in the Daily Journal circulation area were postponed before dark, while Amory’s visit to North Pontotoc was scrubbed after both teams arrived at the field. All of the teams are now set to play this evening.
If Game 3s are needed in any of the series, those will be played on Monday – a tight squeeze with the MHSAA state tournament slated to begin Tuesday in Jackson.
But heavy rains on Friday morning left most fields in this area unplayable, especially with more rain expected for later in the day.
“Our field was already wet and we’re about to get pounded again,” Oxford coach Chris Baughman said Friday afternoon. “We’ll be back out there in the morning, trying to get the field ready to play.
His team, down 1-0 to Class 5A rival Ridgeland, is set for a 6 p.m. first pitch.
It was the same story for Class 6A Tupelo, which called off its scheduled home game with Madison Central about 11 a.m.
“We knew Madison Central was leaving to come here about noon,” said coach Gary Enis. “Our big concern was knowing that there was more rain on the way at about the time we would been trying to start the game.”
The Wave will try to close out their series today at 6 p.m.
Tornado sirens were heard several times during the afternoon in Ripley. The host Tigers, down 1-0 to Class 3A Mooreville, will try again today at 6 p.m.
“Our field was plenty wet after the morning, and looking at the radar you could tell it got hit hard again later, just about the time we would have been out there,” Ripley coach Joel Gaffney said Friday night. “With the kinds of weather we’ve had in this area lately, we’re very wary.”
At Falkner, which holds a 1-0 lead in its Class 1A series against Greenville St. Joseph, coach Chip Johnson said he didn’t mind the delay.
“To be honest, we had a 41⁄2-hour drive home from Greenville last night and I got in bed about 2:45 a.m. Most of the kids got into bed pretty late, too. So it gives us time to let our arms and bodies rest.”
The Class 1A championship series is set to start Tuesday at 1 p.m. at Smith Wills Stadium in Jackson. “That’s going to be a quick turnaround for one of us if we have a Game 3,” Johnson said. “We sure do hope to avoid that, but St. Joseph will have other ideas.”
The other state championship openers: Class 2A, 1 p.m., Wednesday; Class 3A, 4 p.m. Tuesday; Class 4A, 4 p.m. Wednesday; Class 5A, 7 p.m., Tuesday; Class 6A, 7 p.m. Wednesday.
All six series will all be completed at Trustmark Park in Pearl.
Contact John L. Pitts at 678-1522 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
John L. Pitts/NEMS Daily Journal