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Coal Grove wins sixth straight to clinch 2nd in OVC race

SOUTH POINT — A strong finish gave the Coal Grove Hornets a high finish.

Coal Grove won its sixth straight by getting past the South Point Pointers 6-5 in 11 innings Thursday in an Ohio Valley Conference game.

With the win Coal Grove ends the regular season 11-9 overall and 7-3 in the conference, good for second place.

“You’d like to win the conference, but that was as good as we’ve finished in the conference in a long time,” said Hornets’ coach Dean Mader.

The Hornets fell behind 5-0 early before staging a comeback.

“Our kids showed some determination to come back. It’s a shame somebody had to lose this one,” said Mader.

Coal Grove’s Wayne Sparks and South Point’s Kyle Dickess hooked up in a pitcher’s duel. Sparks struck out 12 and walked three in eight innings. Dickess had 10 strikeouts and five walked in 10 innings.

South Point scored all its runs in the third inning.

Jesse Lien reached on a fielder’s choice, Blake Meadows and Tyler Gregory singled for a run, and Tyler Jenkins singled in a run.

Dickess walked and Stephen McClure reached on an error for a run. Adkins grounded out for a run and Cody Taylor singled for the final run.

Coal Grove got three runs back in the fifth inning.

Evan Ferguson singled, moved up on Cody Damron’s sacrifice and Drew Jenkins had an RBI singled. Oakie Haynes was safe on an error for a run and Murphy was safe on an error as a run scored.

The Hornets Justin Hern was safe on a fielder’s choice and scored on a hit by Ferguson as the Hornets got within 5-4 in the sixth.

Coal Grove tied the game in the seventh when Haynes reached on an error and scored on a hit by Delawder.

The Hornets finally ended the game with a run in the 11th inning.

Murphy walked, stole second base and came home on a one-out base hit by Sparks.

South Point had a runner at third with two outs, but Murphy got the next batter to fly out to Mark Davison in right field to end the game.

Coal Grove hosts Portsmouth West at 5 p.m. Tuesday in the sectional tournament.

Coal Grove 000 031 100 01 = 6 14 2

South Point 005 000 000 00 = 5 12 2

Wayne Sparks (12-K, 3-BB), Jake Murphy 9 (1-K, 3-BB) and Jake Murphy, Kyle Dickess, (10-K, 5-B), Tyler Jenkins (1-K, 1-B) and Steven McClure. Wayne Sparks (9). W- Murphy (1-K, 3-BB). Tyler Jenkins (1-K, 1-BB). 2B-SP: Steve Adkins. Hitting-Coal Grove: Jake Murphy 2-5, Wayne Sparks 3-5, Frank Delawder 2-6, Justin Hern 1-6, Evan Ferguson 2-5, Cody Damron 2-5, Drew Jenkins 2-4; South Point: Blake Meadows 3-6, Gregory 2-6, Tyler Jenkins 1-6, Steven McClure 1-6, Steve Adkins 1-5, Cody Taylor 2-5, Jesse Lien 1-2, Michael Lien 1-2.