Shadyside cruises by Barnesville in softball

BARNESVILLE — The Ohio Valley Athletic Conference Class 2A softball standings are a logjam with four teams jostling for the final positioning before Saturday’s cut-off date to qualify for next week’s playoff semifinals.

Entering play Thursday, defending champion Wheeling Central held the top spot followed by Shadyside, Toronto and River. All four are separated by three points and the top two teams will serve as the home team when the playoffs begin.

Jillian Ongley’s battle-tested Tigers (8-4) did their part to cement the No. 2 spot with a 16-5 victory over Barnesville on the Route 800 diamond.

“This was a big win,” Ongley said. “We were coming off a couple of tough losses and we kind of knew we needed this game with the OVAC deadline upcoming. The first inning was a little shaky defensively, but the girls got it our of their system and played well the rest of the game.”

The Shamrocks (6-11) struck for three runs without getting a base hit in the bottom of the first, thanks in part to three Shadyside errors and a pair of base-on-balls.

Shadyside, which tallied just one run despite getting five straight hits in the top of the first, took command in its second at-bat when the Orange-and-Black touched the plate six times for a 7-3 reading.

Jaelynn Greenwood doubled in two runs, while Karly Klug tripled in another. Kaitlyn Weaver singled in one and another cross the plate on Mackenzie Osman’s sacrifice. The sixth came in on an error.

The Tigers tacked on three runs in the third before adding five in the fourth and a single tally in the fifth.

Sophomore Sydnie Destifanes led the winners’ 17-hit attack with four singles and four RBI. She rapped two-run singles in the third and fourth frames.

“Little Sid has been a great asset,” Ongley said of her rightfielder who is in her first year of competition. “She has really stepped up, and as little as she is, she has a lot of power.”

Weaver also collected four one-base knocks, while also scoring four runs and driving in three. She also earned the win with seven strikeouts, but she also walked seven. She allowed just two hits.

Klug added a pair of singles to her triple. Jaycee Mayeres had two singles and three runs scored from the No. 8 spot in the order. Smith also singled.

Barnesville committed seven errors in the contest, with most coming on routine plays.

“I don’t know what is going on. We’ve absolutely been bit by the error bug,” Barnesville head coach Leslie Skinner said. “It started with a 9-error game a few games ago. The first 10 games five errors was the most we had. The error bug has a hold of us and it’s not just one or two players, it’s all the way across the board.

“You can’t win games like that.”

Bailey MacMillan had an RBI double for Barnesville.

Both teams are back in action today as Shadyside welcomes Beallsville and Barnesville hosts Buckeye Trail.