SOUTH WEBSTER, Ohio — For the third time in four years, the South Gallia baseball program earned a postseason victory following Monday night’s 6-2 triumph over host South Webster in a Division IV sectional semifinal matchup in Scioto County.
The ninth-seeded Rebels (6-14) led wire-to-wire in the postseason matchup, as the guests stormed out to a 5-1 advantage through three complete. The eighth-seeded Jeeps managed to score a run in the bottom of the fourth to pull within three, but SGHS closed things out with an insurance run in the fifth to wrap up the four-run decision.
The Rebels advance to Wednesday’s sectional final at Star Mill Park in Racine, where they will face top-seeded and unbeaten Southern (24-0) at 5 p.m. South Gallia also won sectional semifinal contests at Miller (12-6) in 2010 and at home against Waterford (6-4) in 2009.
The Red and Gold outhit the hosts by an 8-5 overall margin and committed three errors, while SWHS made four miscues in the setback. The Rebels also benefited from six free passes in the contest, compared to just one walk for Jeep hitters.
Consecutive two-out singles by Ethan Spurlock, Cory Haner and Gus Slone led to an early 2-0 advantage in the first, then that same trio scored after consecutive safeties in the third for a 5-0 cushion after two and a half frames.
Cornell singled and later scored on an error in the bottom of the third for a 5-1 contest, then the hosts got a run in the fourth after Salisbury reached on an error and later scored — trimming the deficit down to 5-2 through four complete. Danny Matney singled and later scored on an error in the fifth to complete South Gallia’s winning margin at 6-2.
Cory Haner was the winning pitcher of record, allowing five hits and one walk over seven frames while striking out seven. Swords took the loss for SWHS after surrendering five runs, seven hits and two walks over two-plus innings while striking out two.
Spurlock, Haner and Slone each had two hits for SGHS, while Matney and Seth Jarrell added a safety apiece to the winning cause. Slone drove in a team-best two RBIs, while Slone and Haner each scored twice. Richardson paced the Jeeps with two hits and an RBI.