MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Huntingdon gave up three runs in the first inning and three runs in the sixth inning as Mississippi College took a 7-3 win on Friday at Posey Field. It was the season opener for both teams.
"We didn't play to our potential today," Huntingdon baseball coach D.J. Conville said. "I thought we were ready to play, but we were very tentative in the first few innings. I hope this is something we learn from as we move forward.
"This game lets us know if we keep playing like this, we're not going to have much success this year. We're going to have to play at a higher level to be successful."
Huntingdon gave up four straight singles to start the game and fell behind 3-0 in the first inning. The Hawks (0-1) rallied and trailed 4-3 after five innings. But the Choctaws (1-0) took control in the sixth.
The Choctaws' Spencer Brunson reached on an error and scored on a Pate Shackelford single. Chad Wooten's sacrifice bunt scored Mike Kerdock and a Daniel Wass single drove in Shackelford to give Mississippi College a 7-3 lead.
Senior John Rice (0-1) took the loss for Huntingdon, allowing six hits, three earned runs and striking out four in four innings. Ian Underwood (1-0) picked up the win, giving up four hits, no runs, one walk and striking out five.
The Choctaws scored on Huntingdon error in the top of the third before Huntingdon responded with two runs in the bottom of the third to make it a one-run game. An Evan Agnew triple scored Grant Brown and Agnew scored on a Keegan Lambeth single to make it 4-3.
A missed scoring opportunity in the bottom of the fourth inning also hurt the Hawks. A Mississippi College error, a hit batter and a walk gave Huntingdon the bases loaded with no outs. But the Hawks couldn't push a run across. The Choctaws got out of the inning with a pop out, a strikeout and a ground out.
For the game, Huntingdon left eight men on base.
Josh Perez had three hits and scored twice to lead Mississippi College.
The two teams return to action at Posey Field on Saturday at 1 p.m.