Gator pitcher holds Natchez to one hit

Published 12:00 am Saturday, April 15, 2000

Vicksburg High pitcher Chris Wilhelms pitched a one-hitter and struck out 18 batters as the Gators cruised to an impressive 10-1 win over Natchez High Friday at Chester Willis Field.

The Bulldogs made things worse for themselves by committing six errors in the game.

&uot;I wasn’t disappointed in the hitting because Wilhelms pitched great,&uot; said Natchez High head baseball coach Michael Lindsey. &uot;I was disappointed in the overall play of the team.&uot;

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Vicksburg scored one run in the top of the first inning when first baseman Robby Goodson doubled, went to third on a Mitchell Beauman fielder’s choice and scored on a Jeremy Stokes single.

Natchez had a chance to get on the board in the bottom inning after back-to-back walks by Calvin Jackson and Nolan Coward and a fielder’s choice by Brock Barlow which advanced Jackson to third. However, Wilhelms got out of the jam by striking out two Bulldogs.

&uot;I didn’t warm up for the game like I usually do,&uot; Wilhelms said. &uot;After the first inning I had to bear down and throw strikes.&uot;

Which is exactly what Wilhelms did, striking out 16 of the last 23 batters he faced after the first inning.

Wilhelms also walked six batters.

&uot;I was fortunate to have good pitches,&uot; Wilhelms said. &uot;I had my fastball and curveball working in the right spots. I was also glad to have some good defense behind me.&uot;

Vicksburg scored three runs in the top of the second inning as left fielder Blake Nosif drove in two runs on a fielder’s choice and Wilhelms scored on a J.J. Brown sacrifice fly.

The Gators scored two more runs in the top of the third.

Shortstop Jeremy Stokes tripled and scored on a wild pitch. Justin Henry walked, stole second and scored on a Wilhlems single.

Natchez’s only run of the game came in the bottom of the third when Leon Stewart walked, stole second and scored on a Vicksburg error.

Vicksburg scored three more runs in the top of the fourth, two on Natchez errors and another when Ryan Grey scored on a Wilhelms single.

The Bulldogs committed three of its six errors in the fourth inning.

Natchez’s only hit of the game was in the top of the sixth on a Barlow single which broke up a potential no-hitter.

Harveston and Beau Hale walked to load the bases, but Carl Hayes struck out and courtesy runner O. J. Stewart was thrown out at third.

Wilhelms went 2-for-3, walked once, had two RBIs and scored once.

Vicksburg’s final run came in the top of the seventh when courtesy runner Romell Brown stole second, went to third on another Natchez error and scored on a Nasif single.

Goodson went 2-for-3 and walked twice and Stokes went 2-for-4 with a walk and an RBI. Nasif had three RBIs.

Harveston suffered the loss for Natchez, giving up four runs and three hits and walking three in 1 1/3 innings.

Natchez (8-13) plays at McComb today with the junior varsity game at 1 p.m. followed by the varsity game at 3 p.m.

In the junior varsity game, Natchez and Vicksburg ended up 4-4 after five innings due to a 1 1/2 hour time limit.

Natchez will face Gulfport in the first round of the playoffs next week.