Both D’Iberville and Biloxi captured region championships in Class 6A play in the “Southern Six” Monday night.
The Warriors took the Region 7-6A title without even stepping on the field when home-standing St. Martin rallied late to beat Ocean Springs 4-3. A couple of hours later, the Indians produced their own kind of rally and came back from an 8-0 deficit to beat home-standing Harrison Central 10-8 in nine innings.
The results give D’Iberville its third consecutive Region 7-6A title, and the Warriors will close out league play on the road at Pascagoula Thursday night in an otherwise meaningless game. Ocean Springs has secured the number two seed, and the third and final playoff spot from that region will be the winner of Tuesday afternoons suspended game when Pascagoula visits St. Martin.
In Monday’s game, back-to-back home runs in the bottom of the sixth inning gave the Yellow Jackets the district win at home against the Greyhounds. The victory brings St. Martin to 3-5 in district play while Ocean Springs falls to 5-4. D’Iberville is 6-2.
The Greyhounds controlled the game before the rain delay Saturday. Sophomore Jack Jordan knocked a pair of RBI doubles in the top of the second and fourth innings. This gave OSHS a 2-0 lead as the game resumed on Monday in the bottom of the fourth inning,
Greyhound senior Tanner Beaugez started the top of the sixth inning with a lead-off single, and junior Simon Kruppa stole two bases. An RBI-single from Jordan extended the lead to 3-0 and gave Jordan his third RBI of the contest.
The Yellow Jackets answered in the bottom of the sixth. St. Martin senior Tristin Junkert hit a three-run homer to tie the game 3-3. Fellow senior Parker Dobson followed up with a solo home run to put the Jackets up 4-3.
In the top of the seventh, senior McCarty English hit a lead-off single for the Greyhounds, but Saint Martin held on to win 4-3.
“Weird game… coming back after playing four innings,” St. Martin head coach Kary Bridges said, “Just a wonderful at-bat by Tristin Junkert [in the sixth]… Parker Dobson, another senior, hit [another] home run… a big hit by him. We’re excited, and we have a big [game] tomorrow.”
St. Martin’s playoff hopes will hinge on Wednesday’s continuation against Pascagoula. Pascagoula sits 2-5 in the region race.
Meanwhile, in the Kiln Monday night, the Red Rebels jumped out to a quick 8-0 lead scoring eight runs in the second stanza. Jayden Cooper, Daniel Ruiz, Tri Gaughf, Bryan Travis, Gabe Colon and Shaun Cochran all had RBIs in that frame for HCHS.
But Biloxi had a different idea of how to win its first region title in four years. The Indians immediately mounted their comeback in the top of the next frame, scoring six runs of their own and cutting the deficit to 8-6.
Judson Byars and Robbie Hokamp started the rally each with an RBI-single, and two more runs came in when the Red Rebels couldn’t contain a bloop off the bat of Cameron Holt and the ball fell in fair territory. Two more runs scored on HCHS miscues as well before the inning ended.
The Biloxi comeback was complete in the top of the fifth, when Judson Byars came through with a run-scoring single and Logan Fontenelle plated a run with a sacrifice fly.
There would be no more action in regulation, and in the second extra-inning the Indians claimed the region crown.
Byars had a game-high four hits, including a pair of doubles, and also drove in a pair of runs to pace BHS at the plate while Fontenelle also had two RBIs. Hokamp Hokamp had a pair of hits and drove in a run, while Henry added two hits to the winning cause as well. Ja’Darrius Hartley singled to lead off the ninth stanza and scored after an Ian Henry single and an error by HCHS. Fontenelle then added his second run-scoring sacrifice fly in five frames providing and insurance run.
Trenton Bond had three hits to pace HCHS, while Jaxson Moore added two hits.
Holt earned the pitching win, while Travis took the loss. Biloxi finishes league play at 7-2, while arch-rival Gulfport is the second seed despite losing to Hancock 12-9 Monday night. The Red Rebels are the third seed in Region 8-6A.
(228Ssports Contributing Writer Sam King and 228Sports Sports Director Curtis Rockwell combined resources to complete this report)