CHILLICOTHE, Ohio — It wasn’t pretty, but neither were the conditions.
Both Eastern and Portsmouth Notre Dame combined for 27 walks, eight errors and six hit-batsmen over eight innings of baseball Sunday afternoon at Paint Stadium, but the Eagles ultimately stayed afloat by claiming a 15-13 decision in a Division IV district semifinal contest in Ross County.
The third-seeded Eagles (16-8) and second-seeded Titans collectively produced just 15 hits in the rain-soaked affair, as strikes were hard to come by in a consistent downpour of rain. Portsmouth Notre Dame outhit EHS by a small 8-7 edge in the game and both teams committed four errors apiece.
Eastern trailed 3-0 through two innings of play, but responded nicely in the third after sending 14 batters to the plate — which netted eight runs on two hits, an error and eight free passes for an 8-3 advantage. Notre Dame, however, responded with five runs in their half of the third to knot things up at eight.
PND followed with a run in the in the fourth to take a 9-8 edge, but the Eagles countered with two runs in the top of the fifth to recapture the lead at 10-9. The Titans answered with a run in the bottom of the fifth to once again tie things at 10-all.
Eastern plated two runs in the sixth and added another in the seventh for a 13-10 edge, but the hosts responded with three runs in the bottom half of the seventh to square things away at 13-all — forcing extra innings.
Max Carnahan led off the eighth with a single and advanced to second base on a walk to Christian Amsbary. Ethan Nottingham delivered a one-out double that plated both Carnahan and Amsbary that ultimately served as the game-winning hit.
After walking the leadoff batter, Josh Shook retired the next three batters to wrap up the win and another game at Paint Stadium. The Eagles will face top-seeded Southern in the district final at 5 p.m. Wednesday. Shook was also the winning pitcher of record after coming in for relief duties during the third inning.
Carnahan led the Eagles with two hits, followed by Amsbary, Nottingham, Joey Scowden, Brandon Coleman and Derrick Powell with one safety apiece. Carnahan and Amsbary each scored three times, while Nottingham and Scowden drove in four RBIs apiece.
Adam Cooper paced Portsmouth Notre Dame with three hits, including a two-run homer in the bottom of the seventh that cut the hosts’ deficit from 13-10 to a single run.