Wave’s Wheeler shakes funk

golden_wave_tupelo_boys_varsity_baseball_spring_12-13By Gene Phelps

Daily Journal

TUPELO – Ty Wheeler ended his “0-for” streak in a big way Tuesday.

Tupelo’s senior first baseman belted a two-out, two-run single to right field in the fifth inning to help lead the Golden Wave to a 5-1 win over Grenada for their third straight Division 2-6A win.

“I had been like 0-for-12; it was bad,” a relieved Wheeler said. “I knew it was a big at-bat. I just tried to put the ball in play and make something happen.

“It’s like I finally got the monkey off my back.”

Wheeler’s hit plated Reed Taylor and Hudson Roy, who both reached base on singles. Michael Ray scored from third on a fielding error by Grenada’s catcher on the throw from right field to give Tupelo its 5-1 lead.

“Ty’s clutch hit put the momentum on our side,” Tupelo coach Gary Enis said.

Tupelo starting pitcher, right-hander Carter Clayton (3-1), was thrilled to get the extra runs in the tight game.

“We all know (Wheeler) can hit,” Clayton said. “He stepped up.”

Tupelo (10-2, 3-0) scored two runs in the bottom of the third inning to answer Grenada’s run in the third. Ray and Chase Cernigliaro had RBI singles for the Golden Wave.

The Chargers (7-5, 0-3) scored on Ethan Burke’s fielder’s choice grounder.

Stranded runners

Grenada reached Clayton for nine of their 11 hits, but stranded 11 base runners. Brandon Williams paced the visitors with three hits, including a double.

“It was really tough,” said Clayton, who recorded three strikeouts and walked three in 52⁄3 innings. “The defense came through with big plays like they have all season.”

Tupelo plays at Grenada at 6 p.m. Friday. It plays twice Saturday in the Jackson area against Madison Central and Ridgeland.

gene.phelps@journalinc.com