Wildcats wrap summer with a win
The Houlka JV posted a 3-2 win over Tupelo Christian Prep June 25 and the varsity romped over the Eagles, 14-2, and closed out the season with two healthy wins.
Their Thursday and Friday games with TCPS and Bruce were both cancelled giving them an early start to a July break.
“A lot of our kids play every sport there is, so they need a break,” said coach Jimmy Guy McDonald.
McDonald said he saw growth during the June baseball season that will help the team next spring and in future years.
“We had some (younger players) to step up,” McDonald said. “They’ll get one more year of JV and in ninth grade, they’ll have to step up in varsity.”
McDonald pointed out several younger players he feels will make the transition well.
“MaDarius Hobson really started hitting well for us,” McDonald said. “He’s going into the eighth grade. And we got some good outfield play out of Zach Buggs.
“Denim Black started hitting,” McDonald said. “He struggled some in the spring, but he really started hitting well this summer. Braxton Peden played well. He’ll be in ninth grade this year and will help and step up for sure in tenth grade. He’s a catcher and pitcher and he’s pretty much played every position on the field. He’s going to do whatever it takes.”
The Wildcats came off a successful spring effort with a trip the to playoffs and McDonald knows his varsity players will be eager to go deeper next year, but he places the responsibility squarley on their shoulders.
“Our seniors will be expecting big things, but they don’t happen just because you expect them to,” McDonald said. “There’s a lot of work that will have to be done between now and next spring. They have the tools and the experience.”
The Wildcats will have to lock down the mound to get the results they want next season.
“It all comes down to pitching,” McDonald said. “They struggled some this summer throwing strikes and they’ll need to step up next spring.”
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