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Pitching, defense carry Easton Water to sectional title

Bellefontaine needs only one hit to beat Triad 2-1

Hits were scarce and runs were at a premium, but Bellefontaine Easton Water Solutions made a 2-1 score hold up against Triad Sunday as it claimed a sectional championship at Blue Jacket Park.


Bellefontaine Easton Water Solutions catcher Jordan Baughman tags out Triad’s Cory Fenton at home plate during the fifth inning of their Acme sectional championship game Sunday at Blue Jacket Park. (EXAMINER PHOTO | AARON LaBATT)

Joe Oliver fired six strong innings on the mound for Easton Water, finishing off an impressive pitching performance for Bellefontaine in the tournament.

Bellefontaine’s offense mustered only one hit off Triad’s Tim Marsalis, but was kept in the game by its pitching and defense. Bellefontaine pitching surrendered just four hits.

“I can’t say enough about our pitching and defense throughout the tournament,” said Bellefontaine head coach Don Hensley. “These guys do a lot of the little things right and those little things add up.”

Over its three games in the sectional, Bellefontaine (18-3) did not permit an earned run.

“We knew it was going to be one of those games where we wouldn’t be hitting the ball all over the place,” said Hensley. “We were going to have to make some things happen and manufacture some runs.

“The guys were going to have to execute. They were able to do that out there and it showed. We didn’t play our best, but we played well enough.”

Bellefontaine and Triad both advance to the district tournament, which will tentatively start on Friday at Blue Jacket. A district tournament bracket will be printed later this week in the Examiner.

Oliver picked up the win on Sunday, giving up four hits in six innings of work. Nick Burton came on in the seventh inning to earn the save.

Bellefontaine seized control of the game in the bottom of the third inning when it loaded the bases. Drake Roebuck drew a walk that scored John Kirby to give Easton Water a 1-0 lead. Tyler Jones came to the plate next and hit a groundout that scored Gauge Hayman, which made it a 2-0 lead.

Triad was able to score in the top of the fifth frame on an RBI single by Trent McIntyre, but still trailed Bellefontaine 2-1.

The sixth inning saw a sharp defensive effort as Easton Water turned a double play to snuff out a Triad threat.

Jones had a single in the bottom of the sixth for Bellefontaine’s lone hit.

“These guys have been in big game situations before and I don’t have to give them to many rah-rah speeches,” said Hensley. “There is great leadership on this team. They do a good job of getting focused and taking care of business.”

Marsalis only gave up the one hit, but did allow nine walks on the day.

For Triad at the plate, Steven Feasel went 2-3.

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