LOGAN, W.Va. — One down. One to go.
Point Pleasant inched one step closer to the Class AA state baseball tournament on Monday night with a wire-to-wire 5-4 victory over host Logan in the Region IV best-of-three opener in Logan County.
The Big Blacks (21-8) built a 1-0 lead after an inning of play and were ahead 2-0 through four complete, then the guests used a 3-run fifth to establish their largest lead of the night at 5-0 headed into the bottom of the fifth.
The Wildcats (22-6), however, picked up a pair of bases-loaded walks as part of a 4-run fifth, allowing the Blue and Gold to close back to within 5-4 through five complete.
Both teams produced just two baserunners apiece the rest of the way, allowing PPHS to secure the all-important victory in the series opener.
The Big Blacks will host LHS in Game 2 on Tuesday at 6 p.m. Game 3, if necessary, will be at Logan on Wednesday at 6 p.m.
Point Pleasant took a permanent lead in the top of the first as leadoff man Wyatt Wilson singled, stole second and came around to score on a 2-out Hunter Bush single for a 1-0 edge.
The Big Blacks doubled that lead in the fourth as Isaac Craddock came home on a bases-loaded walk to Wilson, making it a 2-0 contest.
Kyelar Morrow led off the fifth with a solo homer to left field for a 3-run cushion, then a 1-out error allowed Craddock to reach safely as both Joel Beattie and Bush came around to score for a 5-0 advantage.
Logan started its half of the fifth with a walk, a single and an error to load the bases, then Korbin Bostic drew a walk that plated Cole Blankenship for a 5-1 contest.
Jared Burnette then came in to score on a walk to Jake Ramey for a 5-2 deficit, followed by an error that allowed both Carson Kirk and Bostic to come plateward for a 5-4 contest after five complete.
LHS stranded runners at first and second in the bottom of the sixth and went down in order in the seventh.
Point Pleasant outhit the hosts by a 9-3 overall margin and also committed two of the three errors in the game. PPHS also stranded nine of the 15 total baserunners left on the bags.
Morrow was the winning pitcher of record after allowing four runs, two hits and four walks over four-plus innings of work while striking out two. Joel Beattie struck out one in an inning of relief work for the save.
Dawson Maynard took the loss for Logan after surrendering two runs, five hits and three walks over 3.2 frames while fanning five.
Wilson and Bush paced the guests with two hits apiece. Craddock also drove in a team-best two RBIs.
Bostic, Konnor Lowe and Ryan Roberts had a safety each in the setback.
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Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.