Looking to get off on the right foot in conference play, the Parklane Pioneers got stellar pitching from starter Conner Wilson and reliever Dylan Dean. But the offense could not follow suit, as struggles against Jackson Prep starter Riley Maddox played a vital role in a 1-0 road loss, Monday evening.
“I thought that Conner did extremely well for us,” Parklane head coach Robert Young said. “They (Jackson Prep) have a really good lineup and I felt like he kept them off-balance for the majority of the game. I thought that our guys played well. Offensively we struggled a little bit but you have to tip your hat to that Maddox kid. He is a big arm for them and he was a low-90 (mph) arm.”
After the Pioneers (11-3, 0-1) were retired in order in the first, Wilson proved to be a thorn in the side of the Patriots sitting down three of the four batters he faced.
He had to face some adversity the following inning allowing a pair of base runners via a hit batsman and a single before getting three consecutive outs — two of which were strikeouts — keeping Prep off the scoreboard.
Parklane landed its first base runner in the third when Jack Brewer was hit by a pitch. But outs during the next two at bats left him on base.
The lone run of the game came the following inning. With one out, Wilson gave up a walk and a single before retiring another batter via a pop out.
However, the ensuing batter reached via an error, allowing a run to score. Wilson battled back and forced a ground out to get out of the inning.
With Sam Crowe on base via a Prep error, Wilson came to bat looking to capitalize. The senior hit a double to left however Crowe was thrown out at third trying to advance.
For the remainder of the contest, the Pioneers could not generate any consistent offense as they were edged in the conference opener.
“I thought that our guys competed greatly,” Young said. “Going forward, we just have to be a little bit better with execution.”
The same two teams will play again Friday in a double-header in McComb. Game 1 is set to start at 5 p.m.