Southern Miss Athletics Press Release
BOONEVILLE – The top-ranked Jones County Junior College Bobcats are one win away from an MACJC state championship.
Lane Ratliff allowed one run through seven-plus innings, while Alex Shermer tripled and doubled to spark the Bobcats to a 5-1 victory over the Hinds Community College Eagles here Friday afternoon at Harold T. White Field.
The Bobcats, 42-8, will meet the winner of Friday's late game between Hinds and East Central at noon Saturday for the crown. An 'if necessary' game would follow 30 minutes after the conclusion of that game if JCJC loses. The Eagles eliminated the host Northeast Mississippi Tigers 12-4 in an earlier game Friday.
With NEMCC losing, that means the Bobcats – regardless of what happens on Saturday – will host the Region 23 Tournament at Community Bank Park May 15-17.
The four tams in the regional will be JCJC, Hinds, East Central and No. 2 LSU-Eunice.
Bobcats 5, Eagles 1
Ratliff was solid from the start as he improved to 7-2. He gave up one earned run, seven hits, walked one and struck out six.
He left the game after allowing a leadoff run in the eighth inning to Matt Jones and walking Tyler Cox. Will Simon entered in relief and gave up just one hit over the final two innings to preserve the victory. He also struck out one and walked one.
JCJC jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second when Shermer tripled into the rightfield corner with one out. Josh Pankratz then followed with a run-scoring single.
The Bobcats made it 2-0 in the fourth when Chase Hensley led off with a double and Pankratz drove him home with a one-out double.
Trent Giambrone drilled his second home run of the tournament – a drive over the leftfield fence – to lead off the fifth inning and give the Bobcats a 3-0 lead. Tyler Graves and Jordan Stark were then both hit by pitches and Shermer doubled to left to score courtesy runner J.G. Miley and make it 4-0.
JCJC went up 5-0 in the sixth when Stephen Stiglets led off with a double and Chris Morgan reached on a bunt single. Stiglets scored when Giambrone grounded into a double play.
The Bobcats had 11 hits in the game.
Shermer tripled and doubled, Pankratz doubled and singled and Morgan singled twice. Giambrone homered, while Hensley and Stiglets had doubles. Graves and Carter Polles had singles.
Jones homered and singled for the Eagles, while Chase Lunceford doubled and singled. Marshall Boggs and Toler Robinson had doubles, while Luke Reynolds and Jonathon Washam singled.
Houston Case, 2-3, was the starter and loser. He went four-plus innings, allowed four runs (all earned), seven hits, walked one and struck out three. Gage Posey went the final four innings, allowed one earned run, four hits, struck out three and walked none.
Hinds was 30-17 entering the late game vs. East Central.
Northeast Mississippi Community College
Harold T. White Field
Game 1, Hinds 13, East Central 4
Game 2, Jones County 14, Northeast 4 (8 innings)
Game 3, East Central 12, Northeast 4
Game 4, Jones County 5, Hinds 1
Game 5, East Central vs. Hinds, (n)
Game 6, Jones County vs. Winner Game 5, noon
Game 7, If necessary