OAK HILL - Despite being outhit, the Ironton Fighting Tigers rolled into Oak Hill on Wednesday afternoon and pulled off a mild upset in a Division III sectional semifinal against the Oaks, 4-1.
The Tigers were able to reach three Oak Hill pitchers for six hits and scored four times with two runs in the first and fourth innings.
Oak Hill had seven total hits in the game but managed to score only a single run in the bottom half of the second inning. After that, they were able to get runners aboard but failed to score against the Tigers' starting pitcher, who would strike out five Oak Hill hitters while allowing just one free pass.
Jared Walls got the start for Oak Hill and was dealt the loss as he allowed two runs in the first inning. Walls would end up going three frames, allowing four hits while striking out one and walking two.
Ironton struck early as Gage Salyers led off the game with a single, then Butler reached on an error. After a line out to the shortstop, Durran drew a walk and Thomas drove in both runners for an early 2-0 lead.
Oak Hill would score their lone run of the game in their half of the second inning after Austin Dean led off with a single, stole second and went to third on a wild pitch. Daniel Eggers grounded out to second while Hunter Lahrmer drew a walk, and Trevor Moore, who led Oak Hill at the plate with two hits and a RBI single to score Dean. The next two hitters went down on a strikeout and a popout to first base.
It was actually the last time the Oaks would pose a serious threat the rest of the game. They were able to get baserunners aboard in the fourth, fifth, and sixth innings but were left stranded.
Ironton scored two insurance runs in the top half of the fourth inning on a run-scoring single by Baines and Pierce drove in a run on a groundout for the 4-1 lead.
In the Oaks' final at-bat, Cole Hanning reached on a throwing error but was thrown out trying to steal second, following a strikeout by Landon Hines. Jared Walls ended the game on a soft liner to second base sending Ironton to the championship game on Saturday at Rock Hill.