Two of Best in Mississippi Faced Off in Starkville

Pillow Academy traveled to Starkville, Mississippi to face Starkville Academy Tuesday night with Pillow coming out on top, 1-0, in a pitchers' duel.

Using a fastball that topped out at 91, Pillow Academy's senior pitcher Louis Coleman, a 6-4, 190-pound right-hander, threw a one-hitter to win his 7th game of the season against no losses. Starkville Academy's Jason Coats also threw extremely well, allowing just one unearned run. Both pitchers threw complete games.

Coleman had his hands full because Starkville Academy's Jake Tomlinson, one of the top hitters in Mississippi, came into the game leading the academy ranks in hitting with a .524 average. On this night, however, Coleman, using an overpowering fastball and a knee-buckling curveball, won the duel between the two.

Coleman, in addition to giving up the one bunt single, walked two and hit two. He also struck out an amazing 16 batters. His performance was so dominating that only two Starkville hitters were able to get the ball out of the infield. Coleman, also a good hitter, had a double and was intentionally walked twice.

Tomlinson is receiving interest from several colleges, while Coleman has signed to play with Meridian Community College. However, look for the Mississippi State coaching staff to keep a very interested eye on him his freshman season at MCC. That is unless he winds up going pro, which could happen, since he has heard from numerous pro scouts, including the likes of the Braves, Orioles, Cardinals, Braves and Nationals. Plus, other scouts are keeping an eye on him. With a plus fastball and a 70-76 mph sharpe-breaking curveball that he has enough confidence in that he throws it anytime in the count (most of the time for a strike), what scout wouldn't be interested.

Below is the inning by inning breakdown of the velocity of Coleman's fastball during his seven inning stint. The number in parenthesis is how many times he threw that velocity in that inning. I used the Stalker gun, a gun that is used by the vast majority of pro scouts, to record his velocity.

  • First - 89 (1), 90 (4), 91 (2).
  • Second - 88 (2), 89 (5), 90 (3), 91 (1).
  • Third - 90 (4), 91 (3).
  • Fourth - 87 (5), 88 (4), 89 (1).
  • Fifth - 86 (1), 87 (5), 88 (7).
  • Sixth - 87 (5), 88 (3).
  • Seventh - 86 (1), 87 (4), 88 (1).

    Gene Swindoll is the publisher of Dawgs' Bite, Powered by, the source for Mississippi State sports on the sports network. You can contact him by emailing

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