After a convincing 14-4 win over Ironton to starts its tournament run, top-seeded Wheelersburg heads to VA Memorial Stadium Friday evening to meet with No. 4 seed Paint Valley.
The Bearcats won a sectional title after 7-3 and 5-0 wins over Portsmouth and North Adams, respectively. That came on the arm of Brock Blanton, a sophomore who tossed 10 innings, didn’t surrender a run, struck out 15 and allowed just one hit during sectional tournament play.
Blanton may take the mound Friday but if he doesn’t, the Bearcats will most likely send Lane Mettler to the hill. Mettler has taken the brunt of pitching responsibilities in key games during Scioto Valley Conference play.
The Bearcats’ offense is paced by leadoff hitter Macky McDonald, who’s helped by Bryce Newland, Dane Miller and Mettler. Paint Valley has produced double-digit run totals in eight games this season.
Meanwhile, Wheelersburg looks to rely on Trey Carter and Jalen Miller on the mound while that duo joins Connor Mullins, Cole Ratcliff and Athan Temponeras, among others, on a more-than-capable offense.
Friday’s winner will play either Westfall or Rock Hill in a Division III regional semifinal at 1:30 p.m., Saturday back at VA Memorial Stadium.
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