This week marks the final regular season week for spring sports as
baseball and softball teams gear up for sectional play and track squads
prepare for league meets and eventual district action. That being said, last week’s action was heated…
This week marks the final regular season week for spring sports as baseball and softball teams gear up for sectional play and track squads prepare for league meets and eventual district action.
This past weekend gave baseball and softball coaches a chance to find out their tournament fate. Most southeast schools were represented in the draw at Jackson High School. This week’s News, Notes, & Nuggets highlights the top seeds from throughout the southeast, and next week’s On Tap section will highlight some of the great first-round match-ups in both softball and baseball from the both east and the southeast.
This week’s top team comes from the softball diamond as one of the top pitchers from the southeast has helped her team to the top of the standings. Individually, we look at baseball in the Southern Ohio Conference to highlight a great pitching performance.
Equally deserving of this week’s top awards were the top teams and top individuals at this week’s Vinton County Invitational. This week’s News, Notes, and Nuggets explain how one Division II girls’ squad and a Division III boys’ team is gearing up for a run at a district title later this month.
Finally, several league title races are far from over entering the final week. This week’s On Tap section looks at a few key match-ups that will play a significant role in determing who wins it all in the various southeast conferences.
TEAM OF THE WEEK
John Glenn Softball: Rachel Townsend fired a one-hit shutout this week to give her Lady Muskies first place all alone in the Muskingum Valley League. Townsend’s fine performance included eight strikeouts against Crooksville, and it improved John Glenn’s overall mark to 19-2. The Lady Muskies are 11-1 in the MVL – just one game ahead of Philo who lost to Tri Valley to slip out of a share of the top spot.
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Brock Hannah, Notre Dame Baseball: Brock Hannah pitched his Notre Dame squad to a 4-0 win over nearby rival Portsmouth Clay. Hannah struck out 19 hitters while allowing just one hit. The win helps the Tartans climb another spot in the Southern Ohio Conference standings as they now move into third-place behind second-place Green and league-leader Symmes Valley. On Sunday, Notre Dame was voted the top-seed in the Division IV Sectional.
NEWS, NOTES, & NUGGETS
900 Ks: Chesapeake High School senior pitcher Allison recorded her 900th career
strikeout in a game on Friday April 30 against Dawson Bryant High School. Chapman fanned 14 in a one hit, no walk 5 inning victory.
Postseason Favorites: Sunday’s voting set the brackets for this year’s postseason baseball and softball tournaments. The southeast teams do their voting at Jackson High School. In baseball, Sheridan and Warren were named No. 1 seeds, while top seeds in Division III include Wheelersburg, Federal Hocking, and Westfall. Eastern Meigs and Portsmouth Notre Dame earned the top spots in Division IV.
In softball, Division II top seeds went to Logan Elm and Athens. Division III tops seeds include Zane Trace, Lucasville Valley, and Chesapeake. In Division IV, No. 1 seeds went to Symmes Valley and Portsmouth Clay.
Softball Shake-Up: As blogged earlier in the week, it was Adena who avenged an early season loss to Piketon in a battle of two top-five state ranked teams on Tuesday night. The 3-1 win for Adena had the two teams tied with one loss in the Scioto Valley Conference softball standings, and it appeared that the two were on their way to a co-championship…or were they?
Wednesday, both held serve with Adena beating Southeastern 10-0 and Piketon defeating Huntington 10-2; however, Friday night Piketon did hammer Paint valley 18-0, but the 21st out was out of reach for the Lady Warriors at Unioto. Adena was up 3-0 entering the final half inning, but after retiring the first two Lady Shermans, Unioto was able to string together five straight hits to plate four runs to win it 4-3.
Piketon now leads Adena by one with two to play. Piketon is currently 17-1 overall and 11-1 in the SVC while Adena is 10-2 in the league and 19-4 overall.
Zeps Still Rolling: Shenandoah baseball continues to lead the Pioneer Valley Conference as the Zeps recorded an 8-2 win over Buckeye Trail. Dakota Ginn’s three hits led the 10-hit attack as the Zeps jumped out to an early 7-0 lead. Brandon Starr, who picked up the win on the mound to improve to 5-0, also had three hits while his battery mate Wes Rataiczak added a homerun in the win. Shenandoah is now 15-5 overall and 10-1 in the PVC.
In PVC softball, Buckeye Trail defeated Shenandoah 5-3. The win forces a four-way tie as Buckeye Trail, Shenandoah, Monroe Central and Fort Frye all have identical 9-3 marks.
Paint Valley, Jackson Take Vinton County Invite: The Paint Valley boys’ team ended the night five points better than host Vinton County to win the Vinton County Invitational Thursday night. Logan Markko won the 800, the 1600, and the 3200 with new meet records and then was a part of Paint Valley’s 4 X 400 relay win.
The girls’ meet belonged to Jackson. Vinton County finished a distant second just in front of Southeastern. Jackson’s Na’trya Green was a member of two relay wins and then won the long and high jump events individually. Teammate Karena Fulks dominated the sprinting events winning three individual events and then anchoring the 4 X 400 relay win.
A Half Inning to Forget: With the Scioto Valley baseball standings still giving four teams a chance to win the whole thing entering Friday, Zane Trace and Westfall were locked up at 9-9 entering the final inning. This is when the barn doors blew off as Westfall scored 15 runs to win it 24-9. In the other key league battle, Adena defeated Unioto 17-6. Now Adena and Westfall share the league lead. The two meet next week (see On Tap below for details).
Lucasville Valley Captures League Title: For the first time in 12 softball seasons, the purple and gold of Lucasville Valley can call themselves outright champions of the Southern Ohio Conference. Braiden Dillow went the distance fanning six to lead her Lady Indians to the 6-1 clinching road win over Portsmouth West. Dillow also enjoyed a perfect night with the bat as the Valley hurler recorded four hits including a three-bagger.
TVC Breakdown: In the Tri Valley Conference, the standings in the baseball and softball are starting to take shape with just one week remaining. In the Ohio Division, Athens leads both baseball and softball with a 9-1 mark. The baseball Bulldogs lead Belpre who sits with an 8-3 record while Athens (9-1) leads Alexander (8-3) by two games in softball.
In the Hocking Division, Reedsville Eastern is enjoying another great spring on the diamond as they are 7-1 in the conference – a record that is one game ahead of Federal Hocking and Racine Southern. In softball, Eastern and Trimble both share the top spot at 7-1.
A big story in the Hocking Division this week was Southern’s Breanna Taylor signing to play softball at West Virginia Wesleyan next year. Taylor is the first girl athlete from Southern in a decade to head to college due to an athletic signing.
Elliott K’s a Dozen, ‘Burg Wins: The Wheelersburg Pirates continued to play great baseball this week as they rode another fine performance from the senior right-hander Andrew Elliott. The Wright State-bound pitcher struck out 12 Minford hitters as the Pirates used a six-run second-inning to supply Elliott all the support he would need. The big inning was highlighted by a two-run dinger off the bat of Bryce Hall.
Walk-Off Winner: Union Local improved to 16-4 as the Jets plated a seventh inning run to beat Shadyside 4-3 this week. The final inning started with a double from Myron Jellison. The double was the final verdict on what first appeared to be a diving catch by Shadyside’s left fielder Josh Kernik, but was ruled a trap by the umpiring crew. The next hitter, Tyler McGary, was attempting to bunt Jellison to third, but a Shadyside miscue on the bunt defense allowed Jellison to come the extra 90 feet for the walk-off win.
Non-League Baseball: In a great non-league battle this week, Federal Hocking led Warren 8-7 entering the home half of the seventh inning. After Warren tied the game at 8-8, it was Zach Heath who singled in teammate Tyler Ward. Heath finished the night with four hits in as many at-bats including a two-run long ball in the third inning.
Meigs vs. Athens, Monday, May 3rd (at Meigs) & Wednesday, May 5th (at Athens), 5 p.m. As stated above, Athens leads by two games meaning they need just one of these match-ups against Meigs to clinch the outright Tri Valley Conference Ohio Division.
Adena vs. Westfall, Baseball, Monday, May 3rd, Westfall High School, 5 p.m. These two SVC rivals are tied at the top. The winner will assure a share of the title and be just one win shy of the outright title. Zane Trace is still in it as well. Zane Trace is one game back. If Adena beats Westfall, Zane Trace and Adena meet Wednesday night at VA Memorial Stadium in Chillicothe.
Marietta Senior Track Meet, Boys & Girls Track & Field, Tuesday, May 4th, Marietta High School, 4:30 p.m. Several solid track programs from the southeast will be on hand in Marietta for what should be a great field and a great event.
Ross County Track Invite, Boys & Girls Track & Field, Tuesday, May 4th, Adena High School, 4:30 p.m. All the Ross County Schools – Adena, Huntington, Paint Valley, Southeastern, Unioto, Zane Trace, and Chillicothe – get together out in Frankfort as the track squads are preparing for the postseason.
Fairland vs. Ironton, Baseball, Tuesday, May 4th, Ironton High School, 5 p.m. A great non-conference match-up highlights the final week of regular season play in the southeast.