The Jaguars of J.Z. George are making up for lost time as they hit the baseball diamond six times in the past week and are slated to play six more games this week.
J.Z. George started off its previous week on March 26 against Region 3-3A foe Amanda Elzy. The Jaguars came out on top 7-2 as Michael Bankston scattered eight hits over seven innings of work as he led J.Z. George to a 7-2 win over the Panthers in North Carrollton.
Bankston (2-1), a sophomore, threw 109 pitches, walking four and fanning 11. He also contributed at the plate with an RBI double and run scored.
“He had a fantastic game. It was his best performance of the season,” said J.Z. George Head Coach Will Rodgers. “He delivered three consecutive strikeouts to retire the side in the top of the second. He got rattled a couple of times during the middle innings, but always battled back.
“He ended the game big. Elzy had the bases loaded, and he caught a fly ball for the second out, and struck out the next hitter to end the game. Our infield gave him a ton of support and definitely improved from previous games by only committing two fielding errors.”
Kendrick Head had two singles, an RBI and scored one run for the Jaguars, who tallied three runs in the first and four in the third. Elzy scored a run each in the first and fourth frames.
J.J. Rias and Brandon McKenzie both had RBI singles and scored a run each. Jacob Johnson had a single and scored a pair of runs, and Josh May scored the seventh run.
The Jaguars only had five total hits in a pair of games against visiting Eupora High School on March 28 in North Carrollton.
The Eagles won the first game 16-0 as they plated four runs in the first, and six runs each in the second and third frames.
Robbie Clunan and Johnson had a single apiece for J.Z. George. Nathan Carpenter started on the mound and took the loss as he lasted one-plus inning, giving up seven runs on one hit, walking seven and fanning one. WilTavious Williams went 1.2 innings, allowing nine runs on 10 hits, walking four and striking out three. Lance Mullen got the final out in the third.
In the second game, Eupora came out on top 22-6 as it scored two runs in the first, 13 in the second and seven in the third. The Jaguars plated one run in the second and five in the third. The defense committed seven errors.
Mullen started on the mound for J.Z. George, pitching into the second frame. He allowed 12 runs on three hits, walking five. Kendrick Head got two outs in the second, allowing three runs on three walks with one strikeout. Athan Shute got the final out in the second, giving up one hit. McKenzie worked the third inning, allowing seven runs on four hits, walking three.
Bankston had five total bases as he had a single and home run. He drove in two runs and scored a pair as well. Shute had a base hit for the Jags’ third hit. Johnson had an RBI and scored a run, and Josh May had an RBI. Head, McKenzie and Laike Shute scored a run each.
On March 29, the Jaguars dropped a 22-2 decision to district foe Yazoo County to fall to 1-3 in league play. Athan Shute started on the mound, going 2.1 innings, allowing 15 runs on 14 hits, walking two. Head recorded two outs but not before allowing seven runs on eight hits, walking one.
Johnson had a two-run single, and Shute and Clunan had a single each. Head and Clunan scored the two runs.
The Jaguars didn’t play well in a pair of games against visiting Riverside High School March 30 in North Carrollton.
Riverside won the first game 15-0 as J.Z. George only managed a single each from WilTavious Williams and Shute. The Bulldogs collected 11 hits off of Williams, who went all three innings, walking seven.
Riverside again had 11 hits in the second game as it beat the Jaguars 19-1. The Bulldogs plated two runs in the first, nine in the second and eight in the third. J.Z. George scored one run in the second.
Johnson had a single and scored the lone run on an RBI single by Alan Busby. Johnson stole two bases to set up the run.
Carpenter started on the mound, going 11/3 innings, allowing 10 runs on five hits, walking six and fanning two. Mullen got the final two outs in the second frame, yielding one run on two hits, walking one and fanning one. Johnson worked the third inning, allowing eight runs on four hits, walking seven and striking out one.
J.Z. George (3-10 overall) played at Central Holmes Monday, and hosted Charleston Tuesday and Holmes County Central Wednesday. The Jaguars are scheduled to play a doubleheader at home Friday against Ruleville Central and go to West Bolivar Saturday at 1 p.m.