JACKSON — The third round of the MHSAA 6A Baseball Playoffs are underway, with three of the spots in the North and South State Championships already taken.
In the North, Madison Central and DeSoto Central both won two-out-of-three against Starkville and Tupelo, respectively.
In the South, Northwest Rankin swept D’Iberville in two games and now awaits the winner of the Oak Grove – Pearl series, which began Saturday night.
Here’s a look at how the first three series played out, and where we stand in the Pearl series headed to next week.
Madison Central def. Starkville, 2-1
Game One – MC 14, Starkville 1
The series started with a strong showing from the top-ranked Jaguars, who won 14-1 Thursday night Madison.
Madison Central unleashed a barrage of 14 runs on 12 hits and six walks, with Connor Nation leading the way by going 2-for-4 with a home run and four RBIs. Ross Highfill also homered and drove in three runs.
Braden Montgomery got the start and worked four innings, allowing one unearned run on one hit and three walks with 11 strikeouts.
Game Two – Starkville 3, MC 2
Starkville upset the Jaguars 3-2 on a walk-off fielder’s choice after the Yellowjackets loaded the bases on a hit by pitch, an Ethan Pulliam single and a walk.
Mason Thurlow hit a sharp grounder to Gatlin Sanders at second base, and he went to the plate to get the lead runner, but Jackson Owen was safe at home.
Game Three – Madison Central 19, Starkville 1
Starkville got a run on a fielding error in the first inning, but it was all Jaguars from there in a 19-1 win that clinched the series.
Connor Nation went 3-for-3 with three RBIs and Creek Robertson drove in three runs. Connor Chisolm homered, and Connor Nation drove in three runs on three doubles. The Jags pounded out 14 hits.
Brendon Minor got the win, going four innings without giving up an earned run on one hit, three walks and five strikeouts. Nation struck out the side on 13 pitches in the fifth to slam the door.
Tupelo def. DeSoto Central, 2-1
Game One – Tupelo 3, DeSoto Central 1
Hunter Elliott really did a number on DeSoto Central in the opening game of the series, pitching a complete game to get the 3-1 win.
Elliott went the distance, allowing one (unearned) run on two hits and a walk with 10 strikeouts. Will Hodges provided the offense with two hits and an RBI for the Golden Wave. Kylan Washington drove in another run with a sacrifice fly.
Brock Tapper suffered the loss, going five innings and giving up three runs (two earned) on four hits and three walks with seven strikeouts.
Game Two – DeSoto Central 8, Tupelo 2
DeSoto Central stormed back in game two Friday night, tallying six hits and working seven walks to put eight runs on the board.
Will Norris doubled and drove in a pair of runs, and five other Jaguars recorded RBIs. Tupelo went through four different pitchers, but starter Mason Morris got tagged with the loss.
Bradley Loftin spun a beauty for DeSoto Central, going seven innings and allowing just two runs on three hits and four walks with 12 strikeouts.
Game Three – Tupelo 9, DeSoto Central 1
Tupelo out-hit DeSoto Central 7-3 in a 9-1 win to clinch the series Saturday in Tupelo.
Kyle Washington tallied two hits and drove in three runs and Mason Morris homered to pace the Golden Wave offense.
McClain Ray picked up the win, going six innings and giving up one unearned run on three hits with three walks and four strikeouts.
Northwest Rankin def. D’Iberville, 2-0
Game One – NWR 12, D’Iberville 1
Northwest Rankin jumped all over D’Iberville in the opening game of the series, winning 12-1 in five innings on the road Thursday night.
Christian Cameron had a huge night, going 3-for-3 at the plate with two home runs and six RBIs. Blake Summerlin and Evan Rogers both drove in a pair of runs as well.
Nick Monistere pitched all five innings for Northwest, allowing one unearned run on three hits and two walks with 11 strikeouts.
Game Two – NWR 6, D’Iberville 4
D’Iberville put up more of a fight in the second game of the series Friday night in Flowood, but it wasn’t enough to overcome a couple of key hits from Nick Monistere and Brice Ainsworth.
Ainsworth doubled twice and drove in three runs, and Monistere doubled and brought home another run. Luke Lycette paced the Cougars, going 3-for-3 and scoring twice.
Powell Ingram got the win in relief, going four innings without giving up a run with six strikeouts.
Oak Grove leads Pearl, 1-0
Game One – Oak Grove 6, Pearl 4
Pearl made it interesting with four runs in the sixth inning, but oak Grove held on for a 6-4 win in the series opener Saturday night at Oak Grove.
Foster Mitchell went 3-for-4 with two RBIs and GW Pigott tallied two hits and drove in a couple of runs. JP Lyon got the win, working 5.2 innings. None of the three runs he gave up were earned, and he only gave up five hits and one walk with four strikeouts. Landon James recorded the last four outs to get the save, allowing one run on three hits.
Brady Boykin homered and drove in three runs for Pearl.
Game Two – 7 p.m. Monday at Pearl
Game Three (if necessary) – TBA Tuesday at Oak Grove