Wheeling rolls past Maynard

• Cardinals host Barton Thursday in Game 1 of championship series

T-L Photo/KIM NORTH MAYNARD FIRST baseman Ryan Jarvie awaits a pickoff throw from Mitch Viakley during the third inning Monday night as Wheeling’s Todd Schmidt dives back safely at Capt. David VanCamp Memorial Ballfield inside the Patterson Recreational Complex in Elm Grove. Wheeling roared to a 12-4 victory in Game 3 of their Ohio Valley Baseball League best-of-3 semifinal and advanced to the championship series which begins Thursday against Barton.

ELM GROVE — It just wasn’t meant to be Monday night for Maynard.

The No. 4 seed jumped out to a 2-0 lead against homestanding Wheeling after half-an-inning in Game 3 of their Ohio Valley Baseball League best-of-3 semifinal series, but the bottom fell out after that as the top-seeded Cardinals rolled to a 12-4 triumph on sun-soaked Capt. David VanCamp Memorial Ballfield inside the Patterson Recreational Complex.

“Some days things go right and some days they don’t. Tonight was one of those times when nothing went right for us after the first part of the game,” Maynard manager Laney Simone Sr. said after watching his team commit five errors. “It’s hard to come back against a good team like Wheeling.

“We’ve been up-and-down all season,” he continued. “It’s not the way I wanted it (the season) to end, but that’s the way it is. We’ll look for next year.”

With the come-from-behind victory, Wheeling (13-8) advances to the championship series against second-seeded Barton (12-8). The best-of-5 format begins Thursday in Elm Grove and continues with Game 2 Friday night at Henning Field in Crescent. Game 3 is set for Sunday at 1 p.m. in Elm Grove, with Game 4, if needed, Monday, July 16, in Crescent at 6 p.m. Should a fifth-and-deciding contest be necessary, it would be played Wednesday, July 18, at 6 p.m. in Elm Grove.

“We had good at-bats. We put runners on and got them in,” Wheeling player/manager Ricky Szeligo said. “(Matt) Brooks settled in after the first inning and pitched a great game. It was a great job by the entire team.”

D.J. Busby gave Maynard (7-13) an early lead when he laced a bases-loaded single down the left field line with one out in the top of the first. The hit scored Dustin Hynes and Mackenzie Koehler.

However, it was all Wheeling from there.

The Cardinals drew even in the bottom of the inning as Jimmy Earp scored on Andrew Henry’s sacrifice fly. Todd Schmidt, who was on second, took home when the throw from the outfield skipped into the Maynard dugout and out of play.

Wheeling took the lead for good in the second with a pair of unearned runs. It sealed the deal with a 7-spot in the third that chased Maynard starter Chris McIntyre, who had tossed a 2-hit shutout (4-0) in Game 1, and bumped the count to 11-2. Mitchell French and Matt Carnahan each had two-run singles.

Ryan Jarvie singled in a run in the fifth and Eric Banal scored on the back-end of a double steal as Maynard tried to stage a rally, but it was not in the cards.

Busby went 3-for-4 with a trio of singles and the aforementioned two ribbies. Banal and Koehler each singled twice. Mitch Viakley had an RBI.

Brooks, who earned the win, worked the first six innings, striking out four, walking four and allowing 10 hits. Jordan Daugherty fanned two in a perfect seventh.

Earp and Schmidt, the No. 1 and No. 2 hitters in the order, each collected three hits, with Earp singling twice, tripling and scoring four runs. Schmidt had a pair of singles, a double and two runs batted in. Carnahan had two one-base raps and a pair of ribbies, while Henry knocked in two runs with a pair of sacrifice flies.