The first round of the Mississippi High School Activities Association softball playoffs got underway last Thursday and heading into Monday night seven squads in the “Southern Six” have punched their tickets to this weekend’s second round.
While the next best-of-three series is set to start this Friday, a trio of teams face win-or-go-home game three Monday night while another pair of teams, Stone and Resurrection, face game two must wins to keep their season alive.
In 1A Resurrection faces a must win against Sebastopol after falling in game 1. Stone faces a similar situation in 4A after a heartbreaking game 1 loss at NE Jones. Game 2 is in Wiggins on Monday night at 6:00 pm. A win for the Lady Tomcats would force a decisive game 2 in Jones County on Tuesday.
In 6A, Ocean Springs swept past Pearl 11-0 and 18-5 and now head to Hancock to take on the Lady Hawks Friday night. Game 2 is set for Saturday at Ocean Springs. Harrison Central also advanced in 2 games taking care of Oak Grove 15-3 and 11-4. The Red Rebels take on D’Iberville in an all-Harrison County affair beginning Friday night. The other two play in series’ will be going the distance as St. Martin heads back to Warren Central at 5:00 pm Monday for a game 3 against the Lady Vikings. Warren Central took game one 10-0 at home but the Lady Yellow Jackets squeaked out a 5-4 win at home on Saturday. The winner of this series will travel to Brandon on Friday night. There will also be game 3 at Petal at 6:00 pm Monday. The Gulfport Lady Admirals took game 2 of this series 3-1 at home Saturday after the Lady Panthers opened the series with a 10-3 win. The winner of the series will face the top-ranked NW Rankin Lady Cougars Friday night in Flowood.
In 5A, the East Central Lady Hornets had an easy time sweeping Brookhaven 17-0, and 16-0. The Lady Hornets head to Carriere on Friday night to open their best of 3 series with the Pearl River Central Lady Blue Devils. Game 2 of the series will be in Hurley on Saturday. West Harrison also swept their way to the next round as the Lady Hurricanes went to Waynesboro and took care of Wayne County 9-6 in game 1 and finished off the series with a convincing 12-1 win at home Saturday. The Florence Lady Eagles will be the next opponent for West Harrison. Picayune coming off a 13-0 victory over Hattiesburg Saturday looks to finish the series on the road Monday night at 5:00 pm A win for the Lady Tide sends them to Lucedale on Friday night and a matchup with George County. Vancleave heads back to Soso Monday night in a winner take all game 3 with West Jones. The Lady Mustangs took game 1 in a pitcher’s duel 1-0 before Vancleave bounced back at home with a 6-2 win to force the deciding game 3. Monday night’s winner heads to South Jones on Friday night.
In 4A, Bay High and Poplarville were impressive in first round sweeps. The Lady Tigers took care of Mendenhall 7-0 and 16-3 and face a tough challenge in Sumrall. Game 1 will be in Lamar County on Friday night. Poplarville was the first team to advance with a doubleheader sweep of Raymond 17-0 and 22-0. The Lady Hornets will head to Leakesville to take on former division rival Greene County for game 1 of their series Friday.
As mentioned earlier, Stone needs 2 wins in a row starting with tonight at home if they are to get by NE Jones. The winner of this series faces North Pike on Friday.
In 3A, St. Patrick awaits the winner of the Franklin County-McLaurin series as the two teams go to a game 3 tonight at Franklin County.