TUPPERS PLAINS, Ohio — A pitchers’ duel, and a senior coming through in the clutch.
The Eastern and Trimble baseball teams battled through 6.5 scoreless innings on Monday in Meigs County, with EHS senior Ryan Harbour hitting a walk-off single in the bottom of the seventh to give the hosts a 1-0 victory.
Eastern (7-0, 5-0 TVC Hocking) only made it into scoring position once in the first six frames, leaving runners on the corners in the bottom of the third.
After leaving one runner in scoring position in the second inning, Trimble loaded the bases with one out in the third, but the Eagles escaped unscathed after a strikeout and flyout to first.
The Tomcats made it to third base again following an error in the top of the sixth, but left the runner stranded.
In the home half of the seventh, Conner Ridenour singled to leadoff the frame, moved to second on a Brayden Smith sac-bunt, and then stole third. Following a walk, Harbour fought off a 1-2 count and came through with a single, bringing Ridenour home for the game-winning run.
Matthew Blanchard was the winning pitcher of record, striking out 10 batters and walking three in a complete game shut out for the Eagles. Blanchard allowed just three hits in the contest, while striking out at least one batter in six of the seven innings.
Hooper took the setback in a complete game for the guests, allowing one run on seven hits, with zero strikeouts and one walk.
Each of Eastern’s seven hits were singles and each came from a different player. Smith got things going with a hit in the second, Colton Reynolds, Blake Newland and Isaiah Fish followed with hits in the following inning, while Nate Durst came up with a safety in the fourth. The final two EHS hits came in the finale, with Ridenour singling and then scoring on Harbour’s single.
Kittle, Brooks and Rossiter each singled once for the guests.
Each team committed an error in the contest, but neither led to a run. EHS stranded four runners on base, while THS left seven.
These teams are scheduled to meet again on April 25 in Glouster.
After visiting Southern on Tuesday, Eastern will head to South Gallia on Thursday.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.