26 Jun

america’s team

A trio of Mississippi high school products are in Cary, N.C., vying for spots on the Collegiate National Team. Dakota Jordan, Braden Montgomery and Mason Nichols are taking part in the Stars vs. Stripes Series that began Sunday at USA Baseball’s National Training Complex. On the coaching staff that will make decisions on which players among the 58 in camp make the 26-man final roster are Jackson State coach Omar Johnson and former Alcorn State star Corey Wimberly. Cal Poly’s Larry Lee is the Team USA manager. Jordan, an outfielder, is a Jackson Academy alum who just completed a decorated freshman season at Mississippi State. Montgomery, an outfielder/pitcher who played at Madison Central, was All-Pac-12 at Stanford this season. Nichols, a pitcher out of Jackson Prep, was a sophomore at Ole Miss in 2023, winning four games and saving four in 23 relief outings. The Collegiate National Team will play series against teams from Chinese Taipei and Japan starting June 30. In Sunday’s game, Montgomery went 1-for-4 with a double and a walk for the Stars, who won the 12-inning contest 15-5. Jordan was 0-for-1 with a walk for the Stripes, and Nichols allowed a run in one inning of work with a strikeout and a walk. The series continues today. P.S. Southern Miss’ Matthew Etzel made his Cape Cod League debut on Sunday, going 1-for-2 for Chatham. MSU’s Hunter Hines belted a pair of homers for Yarmouth-Dennis and now has five on the season; he is batting .315 with 17 RBIs. Also in the Cape: MSU’s Ross Highfill is batting .250 with two homers for Falmouth, and fellow Bulldogs alum K.C. Hunt has a 1.17 ERA in three games for the same club. USM left-hander Kros Sivley has made one appearance for Hyannis, allowing a run in two innings. UM’s Nichols had a 4.50 ERA for Hyannis before he left for the Team USA tryouts. … Props to former Mississippi Braves star Freddie Freeman for getting his 2,000th MLB hit on Sunday with the Los Angeles Dodgers. He is second on the hit list among former Jackson area Double-A players; ex-Jackson Generals standout Bobby Abreu finished with 2,470.

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