SOUTH POINT, Ohio — Just a little too late.
The River Valley baseball team scored five times in the top of the seventh, but that late rally ultimately wasn’t enough to prolong the postseason Wednesday night following a 6-5 setback to host South Point in a Division III sectional semifinal in Lawrence County.
The 15th-seeded Raiders never led in the contest, but the guests battled consistently through four innings en route to a 1-0 deficit. The second-seeded Pointers, however, plated four runs in the fifth to establish a comfortable 5-0 edge, then tacked on an insurance run in the sixth for a six-run cushion headed into the finale.
RVHS got one-out singles from Cody Lee and Tim Kemper, then Lee scored on a single by Mike Williams to make it a 6-1 contest. Austin Barber singled and an error allowed both Kemper and Williams to score, cutting the lead in half at 6-3.
Errors allowed River Valley to score two more times to pull to within 6-5 and the guests had the bases loaded with two outs, but Tyler Cline inadvertently got caught in a run down between third and home. Cline was tagged out to end the game, allowing SPHS to survive and advance on to the sectional final.
The Pointers outhit the guests by an 11-7 overall margin and committed six errors in the triumph, compared to seven errors by the Raiders.
Alex Whitt was the winning pitcher of record after allowing zero walks over 6.1 innings while striking out six. Trey Farley suffered the setback after surrendering zero walks and fanning three over six frames. Brandon Boggs allowed one walk over two-thirds of an inning for the save.
Barber and Lee paced River Valley with two hits apiece, followed by Kemper, Williams and Devin McDonald with a safety each. Barber drove in two RBIs, while Williams and McDonald also knocked in a run each.
Whitt led South Point with three hits, followed by Trey Kearns and Logan Wade with two safeties apiece. Whitt also led the hosts with two RBIs.