CENTENARY, Ohio — On a sizzling spring afternoon on Monday, the Blue Angels’ red-hot April only continued.
That’s because the Gallia Academy High School softball squad, thanks to scoring five runs in the opening two innings against visiting Chesapeake, remained undefeated for the month — and in the Ohio Valley Conference.
The Blue Angels amounted a 5-2 victory against the Panthers, which was their fourth consecutive win —and all coming since April 1.
More importantly, the senior-oriented Blue Angels are a perfect 4-0 in the OVC —and sit atop the conference standings.
The loss left Chesapeake at 3-4 — and 1-2 in the league.
Gallia Academy allowed an unearned run in the opening at-bat by the Panthers, but roared back itself by scoring four times in the bottom of the first — followed by its final counter in the second.
The Panthers — which stranded eight runners including two apiece in innings one, three and five —only earned a final run in the fifth for the 5-2 deficit.
Once again, Gallia Academy’s Hunter Copley pitched a complete-game gem in earning the win in the circle, allowing two runs on eight hits with two walks and four strikeouts.
Aside from the six Panthers she faced in the single-run first and fifth frames, Copley crafted a pair of 1-2-3 innings (fourth and sixth) — and faced four batters apiece in the second and seventh.
Brooke Webb went the distance for Chesapeake, allowing four earned runs on 10 hits and one walk with five strikeouts.
But one of those hits was a back-breaker for the Panthers, as Gallia Academy catcher Jenna Meadows mashed a Webb offering over the center-field fence for a three-run home run.
Meadows’ shot turned a 1-0 Blue Angel deficit into a 3-1 advantage, as the homer was Meadows’ fourth of the season so far.
Before Meadows’ at-bat, Copley connected for a leadoff single — and Paxton Roberts reached on an error.
Alex Barnes then singled, stole second, went to third on a wild pitch, then scored on a Bailey Meadows RBI-single for the 4-1 lead.
In the second stanza, Copley again led off with a single — followed by back-to-back singles by Barnes and Kimberly Edelmann with two outs.
Edelmann’s hit crossed Copley, making it 5-1 for the largest Blue Angel advantage of the day.
From there, though, Webb only allowed a Ryleigh Caldwell single in the third — and singles by Allie Young and Jenna Meadows in the sixth.
Caldwell also reached on an error in the sixth.
The Panthers plated their initial run by combining a Ryleigh Swann leadoff double, a walk to Katy Spears, a Webb single and a Blue Angel error.
Spears scored the unearned marker with two outs.
In the fifth, Swann walked to lead off, then Spears and Storms singled — before Lyric Bair drove in Spears with a single.
The only other Chesapeake baserunners were a Chloe Handley one-out single in the second, Storms on an error and Bair on a single in the third, and finally Webb on a two-out single in the seventh.
Gallia Academy returned to the road, and stepped out of league play, on Tuesday at Jackson.
The Blue Angels are back in OVC action on Thursday —when they travel to Rock Hill.
Paul Boggs can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2106
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