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'Cats top MJ 7-3

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WILSON CENTRAL LOCKS UP THIRD

MT. JULIET -- Wilson Central locked up a third place seed in this week’s District 9AAA tournament with a 7-3 victory Tuesday at Mt. Juliet High. The Wildcats improved to 22-8 overall and 8-4 in the district while Mt. Juliet slipped to 21-10, 10-2.

The loss dropped the Bears into second place in the 9AAA regular season standings, allowing Beech to take over the top spot.

Wilson Central pitcher Heath Daugherty (3-2) held Mt. Juliet in check the entire game, scattering seven hits while striking out three and walking just one batter. Only one MJ hit went for extra bases, a third inning triple by Justin Lopez.

The crafty senior righthander kept the powerful Bear lineup off balance with a sharp, biting curveball.

Cody Liddle paced the Wilson Central offense attack with a 3-for-3 effort, driving in a pair of runs. Russ Strong chipped in with a pair of hits while Brad Collins ripped a two-run home run in the bottom of the fifth.

Starter Cody Carroll (3-3), the first of three Mt. Juliet pitchers, was tagged with the loss. He went five innings, allowed five hits and six runs while striking out four.

Central is expected to play LaVergne in the first round of the 9AAA tournament Friday at Mt. Juliet. The Bears will probably play Smyrna.

Over the weekend, Wilson Central swept a pair of Saturday games -- knocking off McGavock High 13-2 then defeating LaVergne 7-5 despite making seven errors.

Mt. Juliet dropped a 7-4 decision Saturday to Beech as the Bucs pounded out 13 hits and took advantage of four Mt. Juliet errors. Jake Harper (6-1) took the loss for the Bears.

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