CHILLICOTHE, Ohio — The Valley Indians captured a sectional championship Saturday and will now advance to the OHSAA Division IV Southeast District Semifinals.
Valley traveled to Chillicothe on Saturday to take on the Zane Trace Pioneers for a sectional championship. The Indians would defeat the Pioneers by score of 7-3.
After a scoreless first inning, Valley’s offense came alive in the second inning. The Indians scored four runs in their half of the second.
The four-run inning for Valley got started with a Dakota Bowling one-out single. Two batters later, Kenny Williams hit a double, which was then followed up by a Jesse Jones single that brought in Bowling.
Derek Burk came to bat for Valley and got the Indians their second extra-base hit of the inning, as he reached on a double that also scored Williams to give Valley a 2-0 lead.
With Jones on third and Burk standing on second, Tanner Cunningham came up to the plate and added to the Zane Trace woes with a two-RBI single that gave Valley a 4-0 lead.
Valley would add a pair of runs in the third inning as Blake Howard and Eli Harr crossed the plate to give Valley a commanding 6-0 lead over Zane Trace in the sectional championship game.
In the bottom of the third, Zane Trace would bring the game a little closer, as the Pioneers got back the two runs they allowed in the top of the inning by scoring two.
After three complete innings, the Indians led the Pioneers 6-2.
Neither team scored again until Zane Trace added a run in the bottom of the sixth inning.
Heading into the seventh inning, the Indians continued to lead Zane Trace, 6-3.
The Indians added an insurance run in the top of the seventh to take a 7-3 lead.
Cunningham scored for Valley after starting off the inning by reaching on an error. Howard drove in Cunningham with a single before the end of the inning.
Zane Trace was unable to overcome the four-run deficit in the bottom of the seventh, falling to the Valley Indian 7-3.
Harr took the mound for the Valley Indians Saturday in the sectional championship game. The Indians hurler pitched a complete game, going all seven innings in the win. He allowed three runs, all earned, off seven hits. Harr walked four batters and struck out one of the 30 hitters he faced.
Williams and Bowling each had a couple of hits for Valley Saturday in their win over Zane Trace. Williams was 2-for-3 at the plate. He scored a run in the second inning as well as hitting a double.
Bowling went 2-for-4 with a pair of singles. He scored a run in the second inning and drove in a run in the third inning.
Burk was 1-for-3 against Zane Trace. He drove in a run in the second inning after hitting a double. Burk would later score in the inning.
Cunningham was 1-for-4 Saturday, with a two-RBI single in the second inning. Later in the game he would score after reaching safely via a Zane Trace fielding error.
Valley will play in the district semifinal round Tuesday evening, May 17, 2016 at the V.A. Memorial Stadium in Chillicothe, Ohio. First pitch is set for 7:00 p.m.
Reach Michael Hamilton at 740-353-3101, ext 1931, or on Twitter @MikeHamilton82.