Two Cathedral players named to All-State team

Published 12:04 am Friday, May 23, 2008

NATCHEZ — While Cathedral’s baseball season might not have ended the way they wanted it to — with a 3-2 loss to East Webster in the South State finals — but for a couple of Green Wave players, postseason accolades take just a little of the sting off that loss.

Junior pitcher Preston Edwards and senior catcher Jesse Morrison were named to the Class 1A All-State Team while several others were named to the Region 8-1A All-Region Team.

In addition to Edwards and Morrison, the All-Region first team included Braxton Fondren, Daniel Jenkins and Caleb Johnson while the second team included Kole Junkin, Aaron White and Blase Bradford.

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Edwards was the Wave’s top pitcher and finished the season with a 12-1 record while Morrison was not only solid defensively behind the plate, but posted a .430 batting average and struck out only one time in 114 plate appearances.

“Preston carried us through the postseason with his pitching,” Cathedral coach Craig Beesley said. “We could always depend on him. We had a lot of close games in the playoffs and he gave us more confidence to win those games.”

Edwards said he has the confidence to want the ball in his hands in pressure-packed situations.

“Anything to help the team out, I’ll always try,” Edwards said. “I enjoy having the ball in my hands.”

While Edwards was keeping the Wave in games from the mound, Morrison was doing the same thing at the plate with clutch hits.

“Jesse was our most consistent hitter throughout the year,” Beesley said. “He hit according to the situation. His batting average didn’t reflect how valuable he was at the plate. If there was a runner at third with less than two outs, Jesse would find a way to get him in somehow.”

That smart approach to hitting is something that gives Morrison an advantage in the batters box, Morrison said.

“When I step into the box, I think about how many runners are on base, how many outs there are and what kind of specific job needs to be done,” Morrison said. “Anyone can get up there and swing as hard as he can trying to knock it out of the park. But smart baseball is a unique talent.”

While Morrison’s award caps off his Cathedral baseball career, Edwards has one more year to continue his personal and the team’s success.

“There’s always next year,” Edwards said. “We’re going to make it just as far and probably farther (in the playoffs). I’m looking forward to it.”