Preseason Power 25 Countdown: No. 2 Hattiesburg
February 22, 2018
The Mississippi high school season kicks off on February 26, the first day for regular season games. Most teams will begin practicing on January 29, getting their rosters set and finalizing their lineups.
Leading up to the start of the high school season, we will be posting high school team previews every day as part of our comprehensive season coverage:
Preseason Rank: 2
2017 Record: 26-11
MHSAA Classification: 5A
Head Coach: Joe Hartfield
Playoff Run: 1st in district
2017 Final Rank:
Returning Starters: 5
Returning Pitchers: 3
||Miami Dade JC|
Stat Rat (X-Factor)
Joe Gray (.477-BA, 34-RBI, 10-2B, 2-3B, 7-HR)
Dexter Jordan (.398-BA, 31-RBI, 5-2B, 2-3B, 4-HR) (3.08-ERA, 66-K, 16-BB)
Caleb Tart (.382-BA, 10-RBI)
Letrelle Johnson (.333-BA, 20-RBI, 5-2B, 2-HR)
AJ Stinson (.319-BA, 19-RBI, 2-2B) (5.25-ERA, 46-K, 47-BB)
Kameron Wells (.233-BA, 8-RBI, 2-2B)(1.16-ERA, 47-K, 11-BB)
The district champs and South State Runner-up, Hattiesburg HS is loaded with elite-level talent heading into the 2018 season. The Tigers return a solid core from a productive 2017 lineup that posted a team BA of .320, tallying 13 home runs, 37 doubles, and scored 272 runs. Mississippi recruit, OF Joe Gray had an impressive 2017 season posting a OPS of 1.511, 10 doubles, 7 home runs, driving in 34 runs, while only striking out 11 times in 132 plate appearances. Gray is ranked No. 2 in Mississippi's 2018 class and No. 23 Overall. Other returners from the Tigers potent lineup include 2018 UTL Dexter Jordan (Louisiana-Lafayette), Kameron Wells (Miami Dade JC) and 2020 SS Caleb Tart. Jordan, a two-way player, will be a huge piece to the Tigers success this season. At the plate, Jordan has proven himself to be a tough out showing the ability to produce line drives from gap-to-gap as well as the potential to hit for power. On the mound he will see a lot of action pitching in the mid 80’s with command of two pitches.
On the mound, RHP AJ Stinson will be expected to carry the load. Stinson an Alabama State commit will pitch in the 88-92 mph range with a low/mid 70’s breaking ball and has shown improve command coming into the 2018 season. 2019 RHP/2B Landon Rascoe can be expected to see more varsity action this season as he has shown quality arm strength, touching 91 mph and has displayed a tight spinning slider, which should have immediate impact for the Tiger’s pitching rotation.
All-in-all, Hattiesburg has a talented team and has the offense that could carry them a long way in 2018.
- MS Preseason Power 25 Countdown: No. 1 Madison Central 2/23/18
- MS Preseason Power 25 Countdown: No. 2 Hattiesburg 2/22/18
- MS Preseason Power 25 Countdown: No. 3 Oxford 2/21/18
- MS Preseason Power 25 Countdown: No. 5 West Lauderdale 2/19/18
- MS Preseason Power 25 Countdown: No. 6 DeSoto Central 2/16/18