Steubenville CC takes care of River in sectional baseball

STEUBENVILLE — The Catholic Central baseball team is moving on, but its coach made it clear it will have to be much better to do so again.

The Crusaders, the No. 5 seed in Division IV East District, defeated No. 10 seed River, 8-1, Saturday evening at Vaccaro Field. Coach Don Young, though, did not feel it was the sharpest of performances.

“I’m not real happy,” Young said. “Win and move on, that’s the main thing. We are going to have to play a lot better going forward. I’ve been doing this long enough to know the first game (of the tournament) is always a struggle. We’ll get back after it in practice on Monday and look to be better (on Tuesday).”

Central (12-8) scored three runs in the bottom of the first to take command early, then used a four-run fourth to all but put the game out of reach.

Before the Crusaders got the lead, the Pilots were threatening in the top of the first with the bases loaded and one out. Young made a trip to the mound to talk to starting pitcher Anthony LeFever. Two pitches later, Central turned a 6-4-3, inning-ending double play to end the threat.

LeFever found himself in a similar jam in the top of the third, with two on and one out. The Pilots did get on the board this time — on a Hunter Dennis RBI single — but another double play by the Central infield minimized the damage.

In the bottom of the first, Anthony Sprochi singled and stole second, then scored on Noah Fayak’s single to right field. Dom Argentine’s base hit moved Fayak to third. Matt Bell later ripped a double down the left field line to plate both and make it 3-0.

Ryan Gorman singled in Jayden Keeder in the bottom of the third to answer the River run and make it 4-1 Crusaders.

An inning later, the bats got going again.

Fayak singled with one out, Argentine walked and Matt Bell was hit by a pitch to load the bases and chase Pilot starter Chase Lawrence from the game. Then, Keeder singled up the middle to score two and make it 6-1. Gorman got his second RBI of the game, plating Bell with a groundout. Nick Kissinger singled home Keeder to push the advantage to 8-1.

LeFever worked out of another bases-loaded jam in the sixth, getting a pop-up and a ground out to strand three.

“It was a tough game,” River head coach Marty Ramsey said. “I thought we played closer than the score. Tip your hat to them, they are a good team and have a chance to go pretty far in the tournament. We’re a young team, so hopefully we learn from it and carry it over into next year.”

Tusky Valley 2, Union Local 1

ZOAR — Tusky Valley broke the tie in the sixth inning and edged out Union Local in Division III tournament action, 2-1Dakota Hess fired a one-hitter but was unable to earn the win. He finished with four strikeouts for the Jets.

He also delivered two hits and Luke Merritt added a double.

Ohio Division IV Eastern District

Toronto 17, Beallsville 0

TORONTO — A.J. Clegg and Tristan Thomas combined to throw a no-hitter as Toronot hammered Beallsville.

Kobe Herrick and Zac Berger each accounted for a single and a double with Berger driving in four runs and Herrick plating a pair.

Strasburg 2, Monroe Central 0

STRASBURG — Despite receiving two hits from Jason Reich and Kade Demchak, Monroe Central was ousted in postseason play by Strasburg.

Shadyside 10, Frontier 0

SHADYSIDE — Collin Holmes fired a one-hitter to lift Shadyside past Frontier in its playoff opener.

Kelly Hendershot paced the Tigers at the dish with two hits and two RBI.