Desoto County Sports

Saturday sports: Tigers punch ticket to baseball state finals, Mustangs season ends

Photo: Hernando coach Taylor Karr speaks to his team after the Tigers’ 1-0 victory over Oxford Saturday night. (Bob Bakken/

HERNANDO 1, OXFORD 0 (10 INNINGS): Hernando baseball Tigers will face the Brandon Bulldogs at Trustmark Park in Pearl for the 7A Mississippi state high school baseball championship.  

As Brandon was finishing a 10-6 South Half final victory over Northwest Rankin Saturday night, Hernando survived another tense encounter with the Oxford Chargers to win the North Half 1-0 in 10 innings.  The series-clinching nail-biter came one night after a 2-1 victory to open the best-of-three series at Hernando.  

Hernando won the Friday game with only two hits against Oxford pitching standout Brady Stinnett, the two coming in the bottom of the sixth inning when the Tigers scored both runs. The hits were a base hit by Hallas Lawson that scored Coen McKnight, and a Topher Jones triple that scored Lawson with the winning run. 

The difference Saturday night was a sacrifice fly by Brody Martin in  the 10th that scored Topher Jones from third base. 

Hernando scattered six hits in their lineup with Hallas Lawson and Meyer Maddox each hitting doubles against Oxford pitching. 

Meanwhile, starter Luke Romine and Preston Johnson were stalwarts against the Chargers’ lineup, allowing seven hits but no runs. Romine, who started the game on the mound, struck out seven and Johnson another two.  

The two games in the North Half series between Region 1-7A were quite different from the two regular season meetings, where Hernando claimed 8-6 and 12-0 victories. 

“Elite pitching and defense always shines in the playoffs and that’s just one of those things where you’ve got to do it and find a way to scratch and claw because it’s high level baseball,” Hernando coach Taylor Karr said.  

Karr led the Tigers to the state baseball finals in his first season as head coach after two seasons as assistant coach at Lafayette High School in Oxford.

WARREN CENTRAL 5, CENTER HILL 0: Warren Central shut out Center Hill 5-0 Saturday night in Vicksburg to take its 6A North Half series in two straight games and advance to the state championship final round. 

After taking a 2-0 lead on single runs in the second and third innings, the Vikings broke the game open with three runs in the fourth. 

Winning pitcher Brooks Willoughby threw a no-hitter against the Mustangs in the contest, striking out eight and giving up three walks in the complete-game victory.  

Losing pitcher Houston Green struck out six, but walked eight, allowed five runs and six hits in 4.2 innings. Kyle Erwin walked one in 1.1 innings of relief work.  


MHSAA 7A baseball North Half finals – best of three

  • Hernando 2, Oxford 1
  • Hernando 1, Oxford 0 (10 innings) (Hernando wins 2-0) 

MHSAA 6A baseball North Half finals – best of three 

  • Warren Central 7, Center Hill 2 (Warren Central leads 1-0)
  • Warren Central 5, Center Hill 0 (Warren Central wins 2-0)

TSSAA D2-A state baseball playoffs – sub-state round (best-of-three series)

  • Providence Academy at Northpoint Christian – 4 p.m. Wednesday, May 15
  • Providence Academy at Northpoint Christian – 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 15
  • Providence Academy at Northpoint Christian – 2 p.m. Thursday, May 16 (if needed)


MHSAA 7A softball State Championship playoffs – best of three

Hernando vs. Northwest Rankin – at Southern Miss, Hattiesburg

  • Hernando vs. Northwest Rankin (Game One) – 6:45 p.m. Wednesday, May 15
  • Hernando vs. Northwest Rankin (Game Two) – 6:45 p.m. Thursday, May 16
  • Hernando vs. Northwest Rankin (Game Three, If Needed) – Time TBD* Saturday, May 18

*-time to be determined by the number of series requiring a third game 


TSSAA D2-A West Region boys’ soccer playoffs

  • Northpoint Christian 9, Harding Academy 0
  • Northpoint Christian 8, Westminster Academy 2
  • Lausanne Collegiate 3, Northpoint Christian 1 (championship)
  • Northpoint Christian vs. TBD (state playoffs)