Well worth the wait. A base hit by senior Blaine Cline brought Mason Rhodes around to score in the bottom of the 12th inning on Wednesday in Bidwell, giving River Valley a 2-1 victory over Tri-Valley Conference Ohio Division guest Vinton County. The Raiders (12-8, 7-4 TVC Ohio) — who topped the Vikings (5-10-1, 4-5) by a 7-5 count on April 19 — set a new school record for wins in a season with the triumph. Vinton County led 1-0 after a two-out error in the third inning, but left the bases loaded in the frame. River Valley didn’t make it past second base in the first six innings, but Chase Barber drew a walk in the bottom of the seventh, and then scored on a one-out single by Isiah Harkins. RVHS, however, left the potential game-winning run on third base. VCHS left a runner on third base in the 11th inning, and then stranded one in at second in the 12th. RVHS didn’t reach scoring position in extra innings until the 12th, when Mason Rhodes singled to center and then stole second. Cline, the very next batter, lined a 1-1 pitch to deep left-centerfield, bringing Rhodes home for the win. Caleb Owens claimed the pitching victory in five innings of relief for the Raiders, striking out four. Barber started for RVHS, striking out 11 in seven frames. Dawson Brown took the loss in .2 innings of relief for Vinton County. Zach Bartoe started for the guests, striking out 15 in 10.2 innings. Harkins led the Silver and Black on offense, going 2-for-5 with an RBI. Quentin Campbell paced the guests with two hits and a run scored.
Point Pleasant 5, Wayne 2
Hunter Bush and Evan Roach provided back-to-back RBI singles that sparked a 4-run sixth inning and ultimately pushed Point Pleasant to its eighth straight victory on Wednesday night with a 5-2 decision over host Wayne. The Big Big Blacks (10-2) trailed 1-0 after an inning and headed into the top of the sixth facing that same deficit, but a leadoff error and a double put Joel Beattie and Tanner Mitchell both in scoring position. Bush singled home Beattie to knot things up at one, then Roach singled in Mitchell with the eventual game-winner. Roach and Riley Oliver later came plateward on a fielder’s choice and a Kyelar Morrow single for a 4-1 edge midway through six. The Pioneers tacked on a run in their half of the sixth, but Beattie singled and later scored on a wild pitch in the seventh to complete the 3-run triumph. PPHS outhit the hosts by a 13-8 margin and both teams committed two errors apiece. Bush led the guests with three hits, while Morrow, Beattie, Roach and Wyatt Wilson each contributed two safeties. Isaac Craddock picked up the win after allowing two runs, seven hits and two walks over 5.2 innings while fanning one. Queen and Cade had two hits apiece for Wayne, with Cade accounting for both RBIs.
Belpre 3, Eastern 1
The Belpre baseball team — which won 1-0 at Eastern on April 19 — completed the season sweep of the Eagles with a 3-1 win on Wednesday in Washington County. After escaping a bases-loaded jam in the top of the first, Belpre (9-10, 5-6 TVC Hocking) scored all-3 of its runs home half of the opening inning, with an RBI single from Jacob Smeeks and a two-run, two-out single by Dylan Cox. Eastern (10-5-1, 8-4) left four runners in scoring position over the first four frames, and finally ended the shut out with a two-out double by Preston Thorla bringing Matthew Blanchard home in the fifth. The guests didn’t make it past second base again, however, falling 3-1. Smeeks was the winning pitcher, striking out six in a complete game. Blanchard took the pitching loss in a complete game for EHS, striking out 10. Leading the Eagle offense, Smith and Blanchard had two hits apiece, with Smith doubling once and Blanchard scoring once. Smeeks was 2-for-4 with a run and an RBI to lead the hosts.
Waterford 12, Southern 4
The Waterford baseball team — which topped Southern 9-1 on April 19 — defeated the Tornadoes again on Wednesday in Washington County, this time by a 12-4 tally. The Wildcats broke the scoreless tie in the bottom of the second, taking advantage of a hit, a hit batter and two two-out errors. Southern (9-5, 6-4 TVC Hocking) got two runs back with Will Wickline and Arrow Drummer driving in runs in the top of the third, but left the bases loaded. Waterford scored three runs in the bottom of the third, highlighted by a solo home run from Jude Huffman. WHS was up 9-2 after the fifth inning, scoring three times on two hits, a hit batter and an error. The Tornadoes got two more runs back with a pair of walks in the top of the sixth, but Waterford capped off the 12-4 win with three runs in the home half. Cole Miller was the winning pitcher of record in 4.1 innings for the hosts, striking out six. Jacob Huffman struck out three over the final 2.2 for Waterford. Lance Stewart started and took the loss for Southern, striking out four over five innings. Josiah Smith pitched the final frame and fanned one. Ryan Laudermilt led the Tornado offense with two hits and a pair of runs scored, while Derek Griffith singled once and scored twice. Leading WHS, Jude Huffman and Dylan Taylor both had two hits and two runs scored, with Huffman picking up a game-best three RBIs.
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