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Natchez 8s come back for 13-12 win

BROOKHAVEN — Sometimes all it takes is a positive attitude to get yourself out of a bad situation.

And the Natchez 8-year-old coach pitch All-Stars used that positive attitude to recover from a 9-5 deficit and post a 13-12 win over the Lincoln Nationals in the first game of the district tournament.

“Our guys did not put their heads down at all,” coach Dan Ratcliff said. “They kept themselves up. One of the things we teach is to stay positive. If they make a mistake, we pick them back up and they pick themselves up. That makes a big difference.”

Natchez entered the bottom of the sixth inning down 12-11, but Jonathan Ratcliff led the inning off with a single and then scored on Jack Whitehead’s third triple of the game.

Jacob Reese then hit a single to drive in Whitehead with the winning run.

Coach Ratcliff said Whitehead’s bat was one of the big reasons Natchez won the game.

“He’s one of the best hitters in the league we had this year,” Ratcliff said. “He just tries so hard. After practice he’ll have his dad throw 200 more balls for him to hit. He truly knocked the fire out of the ball tonight.”

Whitehead wasn’t the only big hitter on the night for Natchez.

Will Ray, Jakel Barnes, Ben White, Ethan Piazza, Landon Davis, Ratcliff, Whitehead and Reese all had multiple hits.

Piazza and Reese hit triples while Barnes had an inside-the-park home run.

“The guys really played well, especially late in the game,” Ratcliff said. “(Lincoln Nationals) scored nine runs in the first three innings and only three runs in the last three innings, which allowed us to come back. The guys really tightened up and played well.”

Natchez advances in the winners bracket with the win, and will face the Lincoln Americans at 8 p.m. today.

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