Rowe’s RBI caps 6-run rally as Flyers beat N-Y for sectional title

Published 9:19 pm Wednesday, May 17, 2023

The St. Joseph Flyers celebrate after a 6-inning rally that beat the Nelsonville-York Buckeyes 9-8 in the Division 4 sectional Finals on Wednesday. (Tim Gearhart Sports Photo for The Ironton Tribune)


The St. Joseph Flyers Landon Rowe gets a bunt single to drive in the winning run and cap a 6-run 7th inning rally that beat the Nelsonville-York Buckeyes 9-8 in the Division 4 sectional finals on Wednesday. (Tim Gearhart Sports Photo for The Ironton Tribune)

By Jim Walker

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Landon Rowe finished what he started.

The St. Joseph Flyers trailed the Nelsonville-York Buckeyes 8-3 going into the bottom of the 7th inning.

Rowe led off with a walk and came around to score. He batted a second time in the inning and his bunt single scored the winning run as the Cardiac Catholics beat the Buckeyes 9-8 to win the Division 4 sectional championship on Wednesday.

It was yet another come-from-behind win late in a game for the Flyers this season.

“I’ve never been more of a group than this group,” said Flyers’ coach Greg Bryant. “This bunch. I can’t say enough about them. They never quit.”

Fr. David Huffman congratulates Landon Rowe on his winning hit as the St. Joseph Flyers rallied to be Nelsonville-York 9-8 on Wednesday in the Division 4 sectional finals. (Tim Gearhart Sports Photo fort The Ironton Tribune)

The Flyers (17-7) actually trailed 8-0 going into the bottom of the sixth and scored 3 times to set up the winning rally.

In the 7th, Rowe walked and Kai Coleman reached on an error — the only Buckeyes’ error of the game. After a foul out, Evan Balestra walked to load the bases and Rowe scored on a passed ball.

Drew Brown walked and Mark Hodges was hit by a pitch forcing in a run.

Wesley Neal was then hit by a pitch as Balestra scored. The “hit parade” continued as Hunter Staton and Matthew Heighton were hit by pitches and 2 more runs scored as the Flyers tied the score.

On a 3-1 pitch, Rowe beat out a bunt single as Neal scored the winning run to give the Flyers the sectional title.

“When I got to 8-4, I was thinking in the back of miming we’ve got a chance,” said Bryant. “I started looking at who was coming up and in what order and everything just fell into place.”

St. Joseph will play in the district semifinals Saturday against Portsmouth Notre Dame at Chillicothe Paint Stadium in the second game on a rolling schedule. The first game is at 11 a.m.

Notre Dame scored 3 runs in the bottom of the 9th and rallied to beat Symmes Valley 4-3.

The Flyers got 3 runs in the sixth inning on just one hit.

Brady “Quinn” Medinger led off with a walk, stole second and scored on a one out single by Brown. Hodges walked and Neal was hit by a pitch. Staton hit a sacrifice fly and Hodges scored on a passed ball.

The Buckeyes’ 3 pitchers allowed only 3 hits but combined to walk 8 and hit 5 batters. The Flyers’ 2 pitchers hit a total of 4 batters.

Medinger work the final 2 innings to get the win. He gave up just one hit, one earned run with 2 strikeouts and no walks but hit 3 batters.

Brown went 5 innings allowing 7 runs, 6 earned, 7 hits with 9 strikeouts, one walk and a hit batsman.

“(Medinger) hasn’t thrown in many quality innings this season but he did a good job and held them down,” said Bryant.

N-Y got 4 runs in the first inning.

Gavin Richards got an infield hit and scored on a double by Dakota Inman who stole third and scored on Leighton Loge’s ground out.

Maleek Williams singled, Karl Warren reached on a dropped third strike. Loge scored on a balk and Williams came home on a passed ball.

The Buckeyes got a run in the second when Richards singled, stole second and third and scored on a hit by Inman.

The lead went to 7-0 in the fifth when Inman was hit by a pitch, Loge tripled and scored on an error.

Nelsonville-York’s final run scored in the 6th with 2 outs.

Logan Meek singled and Richards, Inman and Loge were all hit by pitches.

Nelsonville 410 021 0 = 8 8 1

St. Joseph 000 003 6 = 9 3 4

Dakota Inman, Maleek Williams (7), Zach Richardson (7) and Gavin Richards. Drew Brown, Brady Medinger (6) and Wesley Neal. W-Medinger (IP-2.0, H-1, R-1, ER-1, K-2, BB-0, HBP-3). Brown (IP-5.0, H-7, R-7, ER-6, K-9, BB-1, HBP-1, Balk-1). L-Williams (IP-0.1, H-0, R-5, ER-4, K-0, BB-2, HBP-2). Inman (IP-6.0, H-2, R-4, ER-3, K-3, BB-6). Richardson (IP-0.0, H-1, R-0, K-0, BB-0). Hitting-N-Y: Gavin Richards 2-3, Dakota Inman 2-2 2B 2-RBI, Leighton Loge 1-3 3B 3-RBI, Maleek Williams 1-4, Collin Bookman 1-4, Logan Meek 1-3; St. Joseph: Brady “Quinn” Medinger 1-3, Drew Brown 1-2 RBI, Landon Rowe 1-3 RBI.