CENTENARY, Ohio — The comeback bid came up just short.
In an attempt to erase a five-run deficit on Wednesday night, the Gallia Academy softball team put the go-ahead run in scoring position, but Ohio Valley Conference guest Portsmouth escaped the jam and left Gallia County with a 7-6 victory.
After a scoreless opening frame, the Blue Angels (5-5, 3-2 OVC) scored the game’s first run in the bottom of the second inning, as freshman Hunter Copley doubled and then scored on a PHS (4-6, 1-4) error.
The Blue Angels’ lead was short-lived, however, as the Lady Trojans scored four runs on three hits and three GAHS errors in the top of the third inning.
The guests extended their lead in the top of the fourth frame, as Bailey Horsley singled home Baleigh Bradley and then scored on a double by Semajah Parker.
Trailing 6-1, the Blue Angels began chipping away at the deficit in the bottom of the fourth, when Carly Shriver doubled home Copley and Mackenzie Barr. Shriver then scored on a single by Ryleigh Caldwell, who then scored on a PHS error, cutting the Portsmouth lead to 6-5.
After two scoreless frames for both sides, Portsmouth added an insurance run in the top of the seventh, when Wesleigh Jackson doubled home Andi Queen.
GAHS junior Jenna Meadows led off the bottom of the seventh inning with a double, and then scored on the next at-bat, as Barr doubled. Barr moved to third base on a no-out single by Copley, who then stole second base. However, back-to-back infield fly-outs, followed by a ground-out to second base, sealed the 7-6 Lady Trojans victory.
Queen earned the pitching victory for PHS, allowing six runs, four earned on 13 hits and three walks. Queen struck out six in a complete game effort.
The losing pitcher of record was Copley, who struck out nine in seven innings of work, while surrendering seven runs, two earned, on 10 hits and three walks.
Copley and Barr were both 3-for-4 at the plate to lead GAHS, with Copley marking two doubles, one single, two runs scored and one stolen base, and Barr posting two doubles, one single, one run scored and one run batted in.
Caldwell was 2-for-3 with two singles, one run scored and one RBI, Paxton Roberts tripled once in four at-bats, Shriver was 1-for-3 with a double, one run scored and two RBI, while Meadows doubled once and scored once in three at-bats. Shelby Long and Aubrey Unroe each singled once for the Blue and White.
PHS was led by Horsley and Sharia Kearns, both of whom had three hits and two runs scored. Kearns tripled once and singled twice, while Horsley singled three times and drove in two runs. Jackson went 2-for-4 with one double, one single, two runs batted in and one stolen base, Parker was 1-for-4 with one double and one RBI, while Eliza Gullett singled once and Bradley scored once.
For the game, GAHS committed five errors, while the victors had two defensive mishaps. Both teams left eight runners on base in the game.
The Blue Angels will have a shot at redemption on April 29, when these teams are schedule to meet at PHS.
GAHS continued OVC play on Thursday at Rock Hill, and will return to action on Friday against Southeastern Ohio Athletic League guest Warren.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.