Making the adjustment to playing in a larger ballpark and a wider, deeper outfield has been a point of emphasis for the Water Valley Blue Devils in practices leading up to their Class 3A state title series with Sumrall.
All of the MHSAA’s state championship games are played at Trustmark Park in Pearl. The home of the Class AA Mississippi Braves features a fence that is 402 feet deep in center field, 332 feet down the right field line and 330 down the line in left. All of the dimensions are bigger than almost every high school field in the state while the playing surface will arguably be the quickest any of the Blue Devils or Bobcats have played on. (May 24, 2010, Page 2B)
No matter the sport, there is always one game or one moment that plays an incredibly pivotal role in helping define that particular team.
In the case of the Water Valley Blue Devils baseball team, that defining moment came shortly after the team wrapped up its fourth game in the Oxford Spring Break Tournament. After winning their first two games, the Blue Devils struggled against Grenada in a loss and were thoroughly beaten by Center Hill in the finale. (May 21, 2010, Page 7a)
It doesn’t take a long time to figure out that the Sumrall Bobcats are a very, very good team. The gaudy team stats speak for themselves while back-to-back Class 3A titles, a 33-1 overall record this season and a 67-game winning streak that ended earlier this season only add to the Bobcats’ resume. (May 21, 2010, Page 7a)
SPORTS EDITOR BLOG — Apparently the Class 3A North Half champion Water Valley Blue Devils aren’t just good on the baseball diamond, they’re pretty good at giving haircuts as well. (more…) (May 19, 2010)
A season built on strong team unity and an aggressive, yet productive approach at the plate paid dividends in spades for the Water Valley Blue Devils in Monday night’s decisive Class 3A North Half title series with Booneville. (more…) (May 18, 2010, Page 8)
A strong foundation of playing together has been in place ever since coach Doug Robbins took over the team six seasons ago, but this year’s team may take that mindset to a whole different level.
Water Valley’s advancement to the MHSAA Class 3A state baseball championships Monday didn’t just happen, it was built on a season filled with caring and sharing and dedication to one another. The bond amongst the team was never more visible than just before the top of the sixth inning started in Monday’s 7-6 win over Booneville in the 3A North Half title game. (May 18, 2010, Page 8)
If there was ever a time for senior pitcher Shanquayle Jenkins to record his best outing of the season, it was in Saturday’s must-win Class 3A North Half playoff game against Booneville.
Jenkins logged a complete-game effort in Water Valley’s 8-1 win over the visiting Blue Devils, who will now host the deciding third game of the series tonight at 6 at Harold T. White Field. (May 17, 2010, Page 3B)
Water Valley’s Montez Clark and Justin McCammon could be the top two finishers in the shot put at today’s Class 3A state meet in Pearl. Clark finished first in the Region 2-3A meet and recently won the 3A North Half title. Clark, meanwhile, has finished second to McCammon in both events, while the scores of both should allow them to finish up the near the top in today’s meet. (more…) (May 14, 2010)
In Thursday night’s Class 3A North Half showdown between the Blue Devils of Water Valley and Booneville, it wasn’t a string of towering home runs, but a series of perfectly placed taps that made the difference.
Following back-to-back bunt singles that were perfectly placed on either side of the pitcher’s mound to load the bases in the bottom of the seventh, eighth grade catcher Andrew Lambert lofted a ball just out of the infield.
The flare scored Jeiron Jones before the ball had even landed in shallow right field, giving Booneville a 5-4 victory at Harold T. White Field. (May 14, 2010, Page 6A)