VINCENT, Ohio — A tough way to finish things out.
Host Warren scored five unanswered runs in its final two innings at the plate and ultimately rallied back from a four-run deficit on Saturday while claiming a 7-6 decision over the Gallia Academy softball team in a Division II sectional quarterfinal matchup in Washington County.
The ninth-seeded Blue Angels never trailed through four innings of work, then tacked on two runs in the top of the fifth to secure their largest lead of the afternoon at 6-2.
The eighth-seeded Lady Warriors, however, responded with three runs in their half of the fifth, then completed the comeback with two more scores in the bottom of the sixth while taking a 7-6 advantage.
GAHS managed to get the tying run to second and the go-ahead run to first with two away in the top half of the seventh, but the guests eventually ran out of chances in the seven-inning affair.
The Lady Warriors advance to Monday evening’s D-2 sectional semifinal against top-seeded and host Waverly at 5 p.m.
The Blue Angels — who were 10-4 in Ohio Valley Conference play this spring — complete their season with a 10-12 overall mark.
Back-to-back RBI-singles by Bailey Meadows and Chasity Adams brought home Alex Barnes and Bailie Young in the top of the first for a quick 2-0 edge, then an Abby Hammons sacrifice fly to center allowed Meadows to come plateward for a 3-0 lead.
WHS answered in its half of the first as Yoho delivered a two-out single that brought in Shutts, then Miller was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded — allowing Decker to score for a 3-2 deficit after one full frame.
Malerie Stanley provided a one-out single in the top of the third that allowed Meadows to score from second for a 4-2 advantage.
The Blue Angels added to that lead in the fifth as a Hammons groundout allowed Adams to score, then Stanley scored on a two-base error with two away while increasing the cushion out to 6-2.
A walk, a single and an error with two away in the fifth resulted in Sams scoring while cutting the lead in half at 6-3, then Nicewarner singled home both Williams and Waderker en route to a 6-5 contest through five complete.
Decker doubled in Congleton with one away in the bottom of the sixth to knot things up at six, then Yoho singled home Decker for Warren’s first and final lead of the game at 7-6.
Gallia Academy outhit the hosts by an 11-7 overall margin and also committed three of the five errors in the contest. The Lady Warriors stranded nine runners on base, while the guests left seven on the bags.
Decker was the winning pitcher of record after allowing five earned runs, 11 hits and two walks over seven innings while striking out seven. Hunter Copley took the loss after surrendering four earned runs, eight hits and five walks over six frames while fanning three.
Barnes led GAHS with three hits, followed by Meadows and Stanley with two safeties apiece. Young, Adams, Hammons and Copley also had a hit each in the setback. Hammons also paced the guests with two RBIs.
Yoho led Warren with two hits, with Shutts, Congleton, Decker, Williams, Waderker and Nicewarner also providing a safety apiece. Yoho and Nicewarner each drove in two RBIs for the victors.
Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.