The next couple of weeks will be fun.
That was the sentiment of Coach Ashley Summerlin as the Port St. Joe Jr./Sr. High School baseball team arrives at the critical juncture of the regular season.
At 7 p.m. ET Friday, the Tiger Sharks (14-5) host District 4-1A foe Bozeman.
The Bucks are undefeated thus far in district play; Port St. Joe has one loss.
After a Monday contest at Rutherford, the Tiger Sharks host district foe Franklin County 6 p.m. ET Tuesday and follow that with a Friday trip to Bozeman to finish the district slate.
The Tiger Sharks could end that stretch anywhere from a one to a four seed for the district tournament.
“We are going pretty good, but we have a tall task ahead,” Summerlin said. “We are still in control of our own destiny. We’re just excited for the opportunity. It’s what you want when you get to the final weeks of the season.
“To get where we want to be, to be the program we want to be, this is where you want to be at the end of the season, with an opportunity. It will be a fun couple of weeks.”
During the past week the Tiger Sharks stretched a winning streak to nine games, found a new pitching weapon as large-school power Mosley ended that streak and responded with a win over another traditional large school power.
Port St. Joe 4, Bay High 3
Tanner Amison earned the win on the mound, Josh Butts earned the save and John Austin Gee provided the bridge between the two at Bay.
“They did a great job getting ahead of hitters,” Summerlin said.
The Tiger Sharks pounded out nine hits, with Kelvin Griffin doubling, singling twice and driving in two runs.
“That double really got us started,” Summerlin said. “Jaden Grantland, whose been going good for us, and Jacob Hopper each had two hits.”
Mosley 4, Port St. Joe 0
The Tiger Sharks held their own against the powerhouse Dolphins, trailing just 1-0 entering the sixth inning before their nine-game winning streak was snapped.
“We actually had more hits than they did,” Summerlin said, noting Port St. Joe had six hits to three for Mosley. “We had our opportunities; we just couldn’t get anyone in.
“And we can not make the mistakes we made against an opponent like that and expect to win.”
The bright spot, Summerlin said, was sophomore Carter Dorsch, making his first varsity start.
Dorsch went the distance giving up three hits and striking out three.
“That was good for us,” Summerlin said. “We have another kid we can put up there on the mound and have confidence he will compete.”
Port St. Joe 12, Vernon 1
Gee got the start on the mound and the win with relief innings from Hopper and Dorsch in a game shortened to five innings based on the mercy rule.
Every hitter in the lineup save one had a hit, with Caleb Butts and Grantland with two hits.
The Tiger Sharks also stole five bases.