BLOG — Timely hitting and another solid performance on the mound from Steven Whitfield lifted the Oxford Chargers to a 5-2 win over Yazoo City Friday evening in the first game of a best-of-three Class 5A playoff series.
Whitfield logged 6.2 innings of work to earn the win. Whitfield finished with nine strikeouts against three walks. He didn’t give up a run until the sixth when the Chargers were already ahead 3-0. Luke Gibbs relieved Whitfield with two outs and an Indian on base in the seventh. Yazoo was unable to tie the game and force extra innings as Gibbs struck out Darius Wright, the second batter he faced, to end the contest.
OHS coach Chris Baughman said it was good to see his team earn the win over the Indians in the opener after entering the playoffs with back-to-back division losses.
“We came in limping a little bit like we did last year with back-to-back losses. That team right over there (Yazoo City) is scary. I knew it. I tried to tell our kids that his not your typical Delta team,” Baughman said. “Their pitcher did what he had to do. They’re very athletic. They swing it fairly well and Steven did a great job on the mound keeping them off balance. He threw well enough for us to win. It’s a big win, getting the first one out of the way and now going home to play.”
The Chargers (16-10 overall) never trailed in the contest as they scored a run in the top of the first inning and two more in the second on a two-run single by William Elliott. Yazoo got as close as two runs (3-1) in the bottom of the sixth, but the Chargers tacked on two more insurance runs in the top of the seventh.
Henry Webb lined a ball past third base and into left field to score a run, while an error allowed another run to score. Elliott, Webb and James Lear all had two hits in the game, while Lear led the Chargers with three runs scored. Michael Bianco recorded a double in the second and came around to score on Elliott’s single.
The Chargers’ second game with the Indians is at 3 p.m. at Edwin Moak Field. The winner of the series faces No. 1 seed Ridgeland in the next round. (April 21, 2012)