IRONTON, Ohio — A collective yes around this no-no.
Junior Josh Faro allowed no hits, only one walk and struck out a dozen batters while guiding the Gallia Academy baseball team to a season sweep of host Ironton on Tuesday night during an 11-0 mercy-rule victory in an Ohio Valley Conference contest in Lawrence County.
The visiting Blue Devils (5-4, 4-2 OVC) sent a dozen batters to the plate in the top half of the first, which yielded eight runs on four hits, three walks, a hit batter, a fielder’s choice and an error for a sizable eight-run advantage a half-inning into play.
That offensive output proved to be way more than enough for Faro, who struck out eight of the first nine batters he faced and retired 10 straight before allowing a walk to Brycen Thomas in the fourth.
After inducing a flyout to left in the next at-bat, Faro proceeded to fan the final four IHS batters while eventually wrapping up the mercy-rule decision in five innings.
GAHS went on to add a run apiece in the second, third and fifth frames, completing the 11-run triumph.
The Blue and White claimed a season sweep of the Fighting Tigers after posting a 7-1 decision at Eastman Field back on April 5. Besides on the diamond this spring, Gallia Academy also defeated Ironton in all of its varsity football and basketball contests as well.
Garrett McGuire drove in the eventual game-winning run in the top of the first after delivering a bases-loaded single with one out, allowing Braden Simms to come home for a 1-0 cushion.
Matt Moreaux and Morgan Stanley followed with a walk and a hit by pitch, leading to RBIs and a 3-0 cushion. McGuire and Moreaux later scored on an Ironton error, then Stanley scored on another error that made it 6-0 — still with only one out in the frame.
Cade Roberts and Cole Davis eventually came plateward on a two-out double by Simms, making it an 8-0 contest midway through the first inning.
Thomas singled home Dylan Smith in the second for a 9-0 advantage, then Davis came home on a ground out by Simms in the third that extended the lead to double digits. Faro knocked in the final run in the fifth with a sacrifice fly to left that allowed Davis to score for an 11-run cushion.
GAHS collected all seven hits and also played an error-free game while also benefiting from three errors by the Orange and Black. The guests stranded five runners on base, while Ironton left only one on the bags.
Faro picked up the win after allowing only one walk and fanning 12 in five innings on the mound. Gage Salyers took the loss after surrendering nine runs (six earned), five hits and four walks over two innings while striking out one.
Simms and McGuire paced the Blue Devils with two hits apiece, followed by Davis, Thomas and Roberts with a safety each. Simms led the guests with three RBIs and Thomas knocked in two, while Davis crossed home plate a team-best three times.
Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.
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