By Gene Phelps/NEMS Daily Journal
TUPELO – Several Tupelo players had money and other valuables stolen Friday night in a pregame incident at the Golden Wave’s clubhouse.
Cody Shrewsbury wasn’t one of them.
“I don’t leave my wallet in there,” he said.
The junior left-hander, mixing his fastball and curve, didn’t lose anything on the mound either, scattering four hits and striking out five to lead Tupelo to a 4-2 victory against Clinton in the opening game of the 6A state quarterfinals best-of-three series.
“I was definitely spotting up my fastball,” he said. “By the fourth inning, my curveball was working fine.”
Shrewsbury no-hit the Arrows for four innings before giving up an infield single to Grady Turman.
“Shrewsbury kept us in check,” Clinton coach Eddie Lofton said. “My hat’s off to him. He got it in on our hands.”
Game 2 between the Golden Wave (21-8) and Arrows (18-11) is scheduled for 6 p.m. today at Mississippi College in Clinton.
Shrewsbury (6-2), who beat Northwest Rankin in Game 1 of an opening-round series last week, walked only two batters, both in a shaky fourth inning. Clinton, trailing 2-0 at the time, loaded the bases with one out.
Shrewsbury escaped the jam with a pop-up and a strikeout.
“I got a little scared there,” he said, then smiled. “I hope we can keep this up. This was a great momentum boost.”
Clinton tied the score at 2-2 in the fifth on a two-run single by No. 9 batter, Benji Barham, a sophomore.
Shrewsbury, who had two singles, opened Tupelo’s fifth with his second base hit. He later scored on a single by Drew Alford, who belted the game-winning homer in last week’s sweep of Northwest Rankin.
Collin Dexter singled in the inning, too, and scored from third on a wild pitch by Arrows left-hander Alex Gunn (6-3).
Brandon Reddout doubled in William Goss, who reached base on a single, in the second for Tupelo’s first run.
Alford picked up his first RBI with a single to plate Shrewsbury in the third.
“Overall, 1-through-9, I thought we took a good approach at the plate against their lefty,” Tupelo coach Gary Enis said. “We laid off his breaking pitch in the dirt and hit our pitch.
“This was a good win at home. I’m proud of the way our guys battled against a good pitcher.”