On Tuesday afternoon, the PHS Dragons varsity baseball team began a crucial series with the Panthers of Ridgeland. After dropping their previous series to Heritage 2-1, Pickens looked to keep pace and stay in 3rd place in the region as Gilmer & Ridgeland were right behind them in the standings.
In the top of the 1st, starting pitcher for the Dragons Travis Huffman sat the Panthers down on 13 pitches to send us to the bottom of the inning. In the bottom of the frame, the starter for Ridgeland was equally as impressive as the Dragons went in order to send us to the 2nd, still scoreless. In the top of the 2nd, the Panthers drew first blood as they plated two runs on just one hit, to take a 2-0 lead over the Dragons going to the bottom of the 2nd. That lead for Ridgeland would not last long as Pickens answered with four runs on two hits to take the lead, 4-2 going to the 3rd.
It was a less stressful top of the 3rd for T. Huffman as he needed 12 pitches to send us to the bottom half of the 3rd. The Dragons had an opportunity in the bottom of the frame to add more to their lead, but left runners stranded on 1st & 2nd to send us to the 4th, Pickens still leading the Panthers, 4-2. Ridgeland tried to get something going in the top of the 4th, but the Dragons were able to get out of it without any damage done. Pickens had a tough bottom half of the inning as they went in order to send us to the 5th, Dragons still in front, 4-2.
T. Huffman needed 11 pitches, and added his 3rd strikeout of the game in the top of the 5th to bring the offense for Pickens up. A 1-out walk would prove to backfire for the Panthers as Zack Moore drove in Dominic Stephens with an RBI single to stretch the lead for the Dragons over Ridgeland to 5-2. Z. Moore would then come in as Dylan Huffman reached 1st base after a passed ball following a strikeout to make it 6-2 Dragons, going to the 6th. Ridgeland had another scoring threat in the top of the 6th, but T. Huffman shut it down with the 2nd of his two strikeouts in the inning to keep the lead at 6-2 in the Dragons favor. Brady Moore led the bottom of the 6th off with a double, & was driven in by Joseph Gossett to make it 7-2 Pickens, going to the 7th.
T. Huffman came out in the top of the 7th to finish what he started and finish is what he did. T. Huffman closed the game out with his 6th strikeout to give the Dragons the win in the series opener, 7-2.
Travis Huffman: 7IP, 4H, 2R, 6K on 112 pitches & 1-4 with 1 single & 1 RBI
Joseph Gossett: 1-4 with a single & 2 RBI
Dominic Stephens: 1 walk & 1 run scored
Dalton Presley: 1-2 with 1 single, 1 walk, & 1 run scored
Zack Moore: 1-1 with 1 single, 2 hit by pitch, 1 RBI, & 2 runs scored
Dylan Huffman: 1 walk & 1 run scored
Will Lawrence: 1-3 with a double, & 1 run scored
Brady Moore: 1-2 with a double, 1 walk, & 1 run scored
With the win, the Dragons are now 14-8 overall and 8-5 in 6-AAAA play. Pickens & Ridgeland will meet up again on Thursday at Ridgeland. First Pitch set for 5:55. The series finale will be held back in Jasper at PCMS. First pitch set for 5:30 for that one.