The 8th-ranked Jones County Junior College Lady Bobcats broke open a close game with a five-run fifth inning and defeated the Holmes Community College Lady Bulldogs 7-1 here Sunday afternoon in the first round of the MACJC State Tournament
The victory advances the defending state champion Lady Bobcats to the semifinals at Ross-Smith Field on the campus of Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College. The win also assures Jones a berth in the Region 23 Tournament, which will be played Thursday-Saturday at Traceway Park in Clinton.
JCJC, 37-6, will play Pearl River at noon on Monday. Pearl River whipped Itawamba 15-0 in five innings.
In Sunday's other games, East Central met East Mississippi and Mississippi Gulf Coast played Northeast Mississippi. The winners of those games will meet at 2 p.m. on Monday.
The semifinal winners will meet at 5 p.m. for the championship.
No. 8 Lady Bobcats 7, Lady Bulldogs 1
Holmes took a 1-0 lead in the top of the third when Karina Brown reached on a two-base error, went to third on a ground out and scored on Keana Wash's single.
But JCJC rebounded with two runs in the bottom of the inning.
Kalyn McNabb doubled off the left-center field wall and scored when CC Lawn reached on an error. Lawn advanced all the way to third base on the error and scored on Relanda McFarland's groundout to second.
The Lady Bobcats took control in the bottom of the fifth.
McNabb reached on an error to start the inning and was sacrificed to second by Lawn. McFarland then reached on a bunt single to put runners on first and third. McFarland then stole second.
Bethany Volking then delivered a two-run single to left to make it 4-1. Karley Crosby followed with an RBI double and Brooke David then had an RBI single. Makenzie Hawkins then walked and Rebecca Dunn reached on an error to load the bases. Reagan Gavin's fielder's choice grounder scored courtesy runner Angela Land with the final run.
Samantha Buller went the first five innings and recorded the win. She allowed an unearned run, two hits, walked two and struck out 10. Buller is now 22-2 on the year. Michele Hester pitched the final two innings, gave up one hit and struck out three.
McFarland and Crosby each doubled and singled for JCJC, while McNabb doubled. Volking, David and Dunn added singles.
Kelsey Marter, 13-10, went the distance and took the loss. She pitched six innings, gave up seven runs (four earned), eight hits, walked two and struck out one.
Brown singled twice for Holmes, while Wash had one single.
Holmes ends the year at 19-26.
Jones County 7, Holmes 1
Holmes (19-26) 001 000 0 – 1 3 5
Jones County (37-6) 002 050 x – 7 8 2
Kelsey Marter and Lauren Tharp. Samantha Buller, Michele Hester and Brooke David. WP-Buller (22-2). LP-Marter (13-10). Holmes hitters: Karina Brown 2 1B; Keana Wash 1B. JCJC hitters: Relanda McFarland 2B, 1B; Karley Crosby 2B, 1B; Kalyn McNabb 2B; Bethany Volking 1B; Brooke David 1B; Rebecca Dunn 1B. LOB: Holmes 6; JCJC 7. T-1:39.
At Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College
Jones County 7, Holmes 1
Pearl River 15, Itawamba 0 (5 innings)
East Central vs. East Mississippi, (late)
Miss. Gulf Coast vs. Northeast Mississippi, (late)
Jones County vs. Pearl River, noon
East Central/East Mississippi winner vs. Miss. Gulf Coast/Northeast winner, 2 p.m.
Championship, 5 p.m.