Raiders roll past South Gallia

By Paul Boggs -

BIDWELL, Ohio — Once again, the River Valley Raiders swept South Gallia on the baseball diamond.

The host Raiders scored a pair of first-inning runs, added a single point for a 3-0 lead after three, then erupted for nine runs over the final two innings towards a 12-1 non-league win over the rival Rebels on Thursday.

South Gallia got its only run in the fourth frame —when Cory Bryan drew a one-out walk, then stole three bases to make it 3-1.

But the Raiders responded with four runs on four hits in the fourth, before tacking on five runs on five hits in the fifth for the 12-1 advantage.

The contest was called following the fifth inning with the 10-run mercy rule.

With the win, River Valley completed the season sweep of South Gallia — and raised its record to 4-12.

The Raiders’ only other victories came courtesy of a non-league doubleheader over visiting Hannan in the season opener.

The Rebels, which fell to River Valley 21-8 in the two teams’ initial meeting, dropped to 1-19.

The Raiders rapped out 11 hits off a pair of Rebel pitchers, paced by Austin Ragan, who went 3-for-4 with three runs scored and four runs batted in.

Ragan’s two-run single to highlight the fourth inning made it 7-1, as his two-run home run in the fifth forced the mercy rule.

Devin McDonald and Brycen Brumfield collected two hits apiece, as Tre Craycraft, Ian Polcyn, Wyatt Newman and Bailey Rhodes recorded the other four.

Newman, who drove in three runs in addition to pitching a complete-game three-hit gem, knocked a two-run double as part of the five-run fifth.

McDonald, on the only error of the game, and Dustin Barber — on a sacrifice bunt before McDonald’s at-bat — batted in the opening two runs.

Newman, in allowing the earned run while walking three and striking out four, saw the minimum three in the first —before facing four Rebels apiece in the next three frames.

Colton Coughenour, with singles in the third and fifth innings, led off the game with a walk.

The only other Rebel baserunners were a one-out walk by Trey Sanders in the second, David Kuhn getting hit by a pitch to lead off the third, Bryan walking in the fourth and Kuhn singling in the fifth.

Kuhn reached third and Coughenour second in the inning, but Newman stranded them there.

Joey Woodall pitched the first three innings for South Gallia, and gave up four earned runs on four hits with two walks and two strikeouts.

Chase Kemper came in for the final two, allowing seven earned runs on seven hits with one walk and one ‘K’.

The Raiders, the 12th-seed in the Division III sectional tournament, travel to fifth-seeded Nelsonville-York on Wednesday for the sectional semifinal tilt.

Paul Boggs can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2106

By Paul Boggs