BRANDON — In the playoffs, it’s about pitching and timely hitting.
That was the case on Saturday night, when Brandon got past Ocean Springs 3-1 in Game 1 of their MHSAA Class 6A Baseball playoff series at Mark Vinson Field.
Game 2 is set for Monday night at Ocean Springs at 7 p.m.
“We got an outstanding outing from Seth McCartney on the mound and late in the game we got a timely hit,” said Brandon coach Daniel Best. “We struggled at the plate a little bit. Their guy did a good job keeping us off balance all night and we didn’t adjust.”
Ocean Springs scored the games’ first run when Bray Hubbard raced home on a wild pitch to give the Greyhounds a 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth.
Brandon tied the game 1-1 on a bases loaded walk by Jonah Katsaboulas in the bottom of the fifth.
The Bulldogs took a 3-1 lead on a RBI single left by Kandin Williams that scored Josh Sullivan and Mo Little came home on a throwing error.
“Kandin has been big for us all season in clutch situations and came up big for there in the sixth,” Best said, “We had some opportunities early and couldn’t capitalize. Now we got to go down there Monday and try to close at the series.”
McCartney — a Meridian Community College signee — tossed a complete game scattering two hits, one earned run, walked two and struck out nine. He improved to 5-3 on the mound.
“It was a high-pressure game, obviously, and I could really feel it with my off-speed,” McCartney said. “My slider worked really well on the right handers and curve on the left handers. I told the guys in the dugout, I can go as long as I can and they have my back, and we were able to come through.”
Andrew Jones and Williams each had two hits to lead Brandon (21-8) offensively.
Reid Jackson (4-3) took the loss for Ocean Springs (12-12).
“They had some timely hits and we didn’t,” said Ocean Springs coach Brian Rea. “It was a pitchers duel and Reid did a good job keeping them off balance. Now we have to try a force a Game 3 on Tuesday.”