Photo/James Pugh

Calhoun City was as good as advertised at the plate. Against Taylorsville in the third and deciding game of the MHSAA Class 2A Championship series Saturday afternoon, Calhoun City shelled out 14 hits to beat the Tartars 14-4 at Trustmark Park in Pearl. Calhoun City celebrated its first baseball title in school history with the win.

Taylorsville won Game 1 on Wednesday 8-1 behind the arm of pitching ace Walker Gable. Calhoun City evened the series 48 hours later to set up Saturday’s Game 3. 

“I can’t say enough good things about this group of guys,” said Taylorsville head coach Dusty Hillman. “They’ve fought all year. We came up a little short here today, but you have to give credit to Calhoun City. They’re a good ball club. They got the hits when it mattered.”

Twenty-seven in two days to be exact. After getting 13 hits on Friday, Calhoun City kept hot bats alive with 14 more on Saturday. The Wildcats came into the 2A Championship series batting .403 as a team according to MaxPreps. The number certainly wasn’t a typo as Taylorsville found out.

“They came out swinging it the last two games,” said Hillman. “There aren’t no doubt. We just could match it at the plate. We had just two hits going into the sixth [inning]. Then we seemed to get things going, but Calhoun City found a way to run them down.”

Tashone Corbit hit two triples for Calhoun City in Game 3, his latter clearing all three bases previously loaded in the fifth. The fifth inning did the most damage to Taylorsville. The Wildcats scored five runs in the top frame to go up 8-1. Five more Calhoun City players hit two or more base-hits in the seven-inning contest as well. Corbit, who also pitched, tossed one-inning shy of a complete game. He allowed four runs – three earned – on four Taylorsville hits.

Branson Sharpley was the only Tartar to walk away with multiple hits. He started the game Saturday afternoon in the same way he started Game 1 – with a leadoff triple. Ky Buckley, Chandler Cline, Kelby Jordan, and Kenner Todd had solo hits as well. 

Chandler Cline began the day on the mound. Cline, who won 2A Player of the Year days before, lasted 4.2 innings. He was replaced by Sharpley and Todd who both combined for 2.1 innings of work in relief.

Hillman said this senior class would not be forgotten.

“This group of seniors mean the world to me,” said Hillman. “They’ve been with me since they were in the eighth grade and they’ll all started since they were in the eighth grade. I can’t say enough about them. They’re great kids, and they’ve always done everything I’ve asked them to do. I hate they come up short. It kills me.”

Taylorsville finishes the season 27-11, having won the Region 5-2A title and the 2A South State Championship series.