McDonough keys CHS in 14-4 victory

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, April 25, 2006

NATCHEZ &8212; Take your pick of the highlight of Cathedral&8217;s 14-4 mashing of Noxapater in five innings Friday night.

It&8217;s either Patrick McDonough&8217;s two triples and two singles to go 4-for-4. Or it was McDonough running so hard on both triples that you&8217;d swear someone was chasing him.

He even swiped a stolen base clean in the third.

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And it brought back memories of Cathedral teams of the past &8212; a nine-run first inning and 14 hits for the game. The Green Wave will play at noon today against Enteprise, a 5-2 winner over Ethel.

&8220;I don&8217;t know what it was, but I felt good,&8221; McDonough said. &8220;I got up there, and I guess I calmed down, didn&8217;t swing too hard and let my bat work for me. And it did. That (first inning) helped us out a lot. That gave us the momentum all the momentum going into the game.&8221;

McDonough got around the bases in a hurry in that first inning when he parked one to the fence in the spacious gaps at Chester Willis Field. It drove in two runs, and the Green Wave capitalized on the momentum.

Three runs in the fifth inning ended the game early.

&8220;We kind of sleepwalked through the third and fourth innings after we got out to that 9-1 lead,&8221; CHS head coach Craig Beesley said. &8220;We tried some different things in the middle &8212; bunting, hitting and running &8212; but everything we tried backfired on us. Early in the year I said we don&8217;t play for the big inning anymore, but we had nine in the first and three in the fourth.&8221;

The Green Wave (15-3) got only two runs after that first inning but finished it off in the fifth to save the pitching staff some innings. McDonough came up with his second triple after Charlie Lane led off with a triple, and Zack Calhoun&8217;s fly ball to left was deep enough for McDonough to tag and score.

Braxton Fondren singled in Kole Junkin to enact the 10-run rule.

&8220;That was two back-to-back triples leading off that inning,&8221; Beesley said. &8220;Patrick hit the ball hard all four at-bats. The two triples he hit were hard-hit balls. I hope he stays hot this weekend. I hope Charlie continues to hit well. He had a tough night tonight with one hit, but I&8217;m not worrying about Charlie.&8221;

The Tigers (7-12) could never get on track in that first inning with No. 1 starter Jake Shoens. Cathedral blistered him for three hits while he walked two and hit a batter, and he left without getting an out in the first inning.

Taylor Gaylord pitched the rest of the way for Noxapater and allowed only three hits through three innings until that fifth.

&8220;They came out hitting it for sure,&8221; Noxapater head coach Zach Sanders said. &8220;(Shoens) is my No. 1. He&8217;s been a little beat up all year. He&8217;s got a sore back. I thought he was a little better, but he&8217;s not.&8221;

McDonough had a two-run triple of Shoens in that first inning, and David Ozburn doubled in a run before Gaylord took over on the mound. Then Kole Junkin singled in Calhoun and Ozburn before No. 8 hitter Fondren flied out to right on a hard-hit ball for the first out of the inning.

Jessie Morrison tripled in Junkin and Alex Middleton before scoring on a Preston Edwards single for a 9-0 lead.

&8220;We just did everything normal,&8221; McDonough said. &8220;We had to come out here ready to play. It doesn&8217;t matter who we&8217;re playing &8212; the No. 4 team or what &8212; we&8217;ve got to come out here and play hard.&8221;

The quick lead allowed the Green Wave to use Lane on the mound for only two innings before Fondren pitched the final three in his first varsity outing this spring. The Tigers got three in the third after tacking on a run in the second on no hits off Lane when Kenny Drury walked and later scored on a wild pitch.

Lane exited after throwing a mere 35 pitches.

&8220;(Fondren) came in in the first playoff game, and he could have been a little nervous,&8221; Beesley said. &8220;Once he got his curveball over, he looked pretty good. That was no more than a bull pen on a day off for Charlie. He could come back tomorrow and throw if he has to.

&8220;I&8217;m hoping Patrick can get the whole game tomorrow. I know Alex will be ready. He&8217;s been ready when we needed him because he&8217;s done a good job for us.&8221;