From Staff Reports
CANTON – The Starkville Yellow Jackets clinched first place in Class 5A, Region 3, District 4 and a first-round bye in the postseason with a pair of easy victories at Canton on Thursday afternoon.
Starkville improved its records to 16-9 overall and 7-2 in the division with 15-0 and 18-0 wins.
In the second game, pitcher Nick Brooks nearly tossed a perfect game for the Jackets in three innings with a walk keeping him from accomplishing the feat. He did finish with a no-hitter.
Offensively for SHS, Victor Johnson had a triple, while Nathan Pugh and Daniel Murphree added a single and double each.
The Jackets scored six runs in the second inning and broke the game open with a 10-run third.
Pugh was the winning hurler in the first game and only gave up one hit. He had eight strikeouts.
Starkville exploded for seven runs in the first inning and six more in the fourth. It only had six hits, but benefitted from several walks from the Canton pitching staff.
The Jackets now wait on the winner between the first-round Class 5A playoff series between Center Hill and Jackson Lanier.
Starkville hosts the first game of the second round on April 28, then travels the next day and a third game, if necessary, returns to SHS on the following Monday.