Wolverines sweep Mantachie to earn spot in North State finals

By Austin Bishop
The Webster Progress-Times

East Webster’s two-game sweep of Mantachie may not have been akin to a beauty pageant, but coach Wes Johnson’s Wolverines did what they had to do to win the game and advance to the MHSAA Class 2A North State Championship Series against Eupora.
“We didn’t play our best, but anytime you win two in a row this time of year, it’s a good thing,” Johnson said. “We just made some mistakes, but we made enough good plays to overcome them. We will have to do better if we want to keep on going.”
East Webster (22-8) is set to host Eupora (15-10) in the first game of the series today (Thursday) at 7 p.m. The second game is set for Eupora on Friday at 1 p.m., with a third game — if necessary — set for East Webster at 6 p.m. on Saturday. The winner of that series will take on the Taylorsville-Enterprise winner next week in Pearl for the MHSAA Class 2A State Baseball Championship.
After East Webster rallied for a 7-6 win over Mantachie on Saturday, Brock Flemings took the mound on Monday and fired a two-hitter as the Wolverines won 4-0.
“He has shown signs of that all year,” Johnson said of Flemings’ performance. “His last outing was a little rough, but I talked to him (Monday) and kind of challenged him. He responded well.”
Chase Keller banged out a pair of hits for the winners in the game, while Braden Harrison, Jack Wilson and Derek Jones all had singles. In fact, Jones used his speed to turn his hit into three bases. He legged out a bunt, then hustled all the way to third when the throw to first got away. He later scored on a wild pitch. East Webster scored single runs in the first, second, fourth and fifth innings.
Game one of the series with Mantachie saw EW jump out to a 5-1 lead, before the visitors mounted a comeback. Mantachie eventually tied the game, but the Wolverines rallied for the winning run in the bottom of the sixth inning.
Jones led off the inning with a walk and stole second before he was bunted over to third. From there he scored on a ground ball by John Wofford Williams. Cody Boland, who picked up the win in relief of Jones, then shut Mantachie down in the seventh to give the Wolverines the win.