GLEN DALE - In a game where hitting was at a minimum, John Marshall made enough plays to pull out a 3-2 victory against Wheeling Central Monday.
Both teams wanted to play small ball in a pitcher's duel pitting the Monarchs' ace, Trevor Hardesty, against Central's Brian Shaw.
The Monarchs simply executed when they had the opportunity.
John Marshall (5-4) turned a walk and a stolen base into a run.
It used a two-out double and single by the bottom of the order to earn another.
Finally, in what turned out to be the biggest run of the game, the Monarchs turned a single, error and a balk into a sacrifice fly in the seventh to turn the game in their favor.
"We didn't hit the ball well," said Roger Simmons, who was subbing for veteran coach Bob Montgomery, who missed the game with an illness. "Their pitcher (Shaw) did a good job keeping us off balance. We just had to be patient and what for some breaks to happen and we did a good job taking advantage of the few that we do."
The pitchers engaged in what ended up being an old fashion duel, going mano-a-mano, with offenses trying to scratch out a run any way they could.
It was Hardesty, at the plate, who ended up getting the one that counted the most.
With JM clinging to a 2-1 lead, the Monarchs' Jared Horan led off the inning with a single to center that was bobbled, enabling him to take the extra base. He then reached third via a balk call on Shaw.
After a fly to short right field couldn't plate Horan, Hardesty followed with another fly to right and Horan was able to sneak into the plate just ahead of the tag of catcher Derek Yocke, giving John Marshall a 3-1 lead.
It ended up being big when Wheeling Central pushed across a run in the top of the seventh, when Joe Minor reached on a two-base error and went to third on a wild pitch. He scored on Anthony Gentile's single. However, Hardesty struck out J.S, Giffith to end the threat and the game.
Central had several opportunities to get on the board, none bigger than the third, when Brian Campbell led off with a single and Yocke walked. Campbell stole his way to third, giving Wheeling Central runners at the corners with no outs.
Hardesty pitched out of it, getting a fly ball to first and two strikeouts.
"We were trying to play small ball and we're not doing it," coach Jimbo Wodusky said after a no-holds-barred meeting with his team in the outfield after the game. "We aren't doing what we are taught to do and when you don't execute, and do what you are taught to do, you're going to lose ball games."
A lot of it had to do with Hardesty pitching out of trouble consistently.
"You've got to give him credit," Wodusky said. "At the same time, we still did not execute when we had the opportunity."
Hardesty seemed to pitch better when he got in jams.
"He's a competitor, he really bears down when he gets in those situations," Simmons said. "All we ask him to do is keep us in games and he does a good job of keeping the score in an area where we are always in the game."
John Marshall struck first in the second when Jerrick Waldrum walked, stole second and and scored on Cory Schubert's double. While rounding third, Waldrum suffered what appeared to be a quad injury, but he was able to continue on and score the run.
Central tied in the fourth, when Campbell walked, stole second, moved to third on a passed ball and scored on Yocke's double.
The tie lasted until the fifth when, with two outs, No. 8 hitter Nick Snyder doubled and scored on No. 9 hitter Bailey Black's single.
"We want to put guys in the position where we think they can contribute the most," Simmons said. "Sometimes maybe a pitcher will relax when it's the bottom of the order and that may help those guys. But we have confidence up and down our lineup that these guys can make contact and they came through for us."
Paden City 16, Valley 1
PINE GROVE - Isaac Hall hit two home runs and drove in six runs to lead the Wildcats to the victory.
Zach Heasley added a home run, two singles and drove in five more in the rout and Luke Cooper had three doubles, a home run and drove in a pair of runs.
Kyle Postlethwait picked up the win, striking out three and scattering five Lumberjack hits.
Colby Butcher homered and singled to lead Valley.
Magnolia 11, Clay Battelle 0
NEW MARTINSVILLE - Magnolia won for the sixth time in its last seven games, getting a two-hit shutout from Zach Willhoite in a victory against Clay-Battelle.
Brandon Mason drove in four runs with a pair of singles, Chase Miller added a double, single and RBI and Willhoite doubled and knocked in twp runs.
Grant Cain and Jake Starkey singled in a run each.
Linsly 11, Frontier 1
HANNIBAL - Linsly pounded out 13 hits in a rout of River.
Erick Taylor had two singles and a double and knocked in three for the Cadets and Colton Coss had three RBI on a pair of doubles.
Arien Seymour had a triple, single and a RBI and Tyler Kreichbuam tripled and drove in a run.
Wes Smith had two singles and a RBI for River.
Wheeling Park 7, Steubenville 6
WHEELING - John Massey singled in the winning run to give Park the victory against visiting Steubeneville.
Chalmer Moffett hit his third home run and also doubled for Park while driving in three. Justice Jackson had two singles.
Jackson picked up the victory, striking out five in three innings of relief work.
Bellaire 3, Buckeye Local 2
RAYLAND - Bellaire held off homestanding Buckeye Local, which got a two-run homer from Jonathan Borkoski in the seventh.
Bellaire got RBI singles from Brendan Ross and Tyler Ramsey. Hunter Westlake had a triple and a single.
Spencer Badia and Nick Protean combined on a four hitter.
Barnesville 6, Bridgeport 1
BARNESVILLE-David Brown homered to help Barnesville earn the win. Logan Schultz added a pair of singles.
Bailey McGrath had a double and single for Bridgeport and Q.J. Williams had a pair of base hits.
Union Local 11, Indian Creek 10
MORRISTOWN - The Jets outslugged visiting Indian Creek in a close one Monday. Matt Dunfee homered, singled and knocked in four runs to lead the Union Local attack, which had 13 hits.
Jimmy Bolyog had a three-run home run for one of his two hits.
Edison 7, Harrison Central 6
RICHMOND - Matt Dillon drove in Storm Allese for the winning run as Edison picked up the win.
Dillon had two singles and two RBI in the victory while Tanner Evans had a double, single and two RBI and Clay Woodrward a double, single and a RBI.
Giovanni Rocchi had two singles and a double for Harrison Central.
East Liverpool 8, Weir 4
EAST LIVERPOOL - The homestanding Potters plated seven runs early and held off Weir.
Tyler Rechtenwalk had three singles, a double and drove in three runs to lead the way. Cole Davison had a double and a RBI for Weir.
Oak Glen 9, Beaver Local 1
NEW MANCHESTER - Bub Haddox had a double and drove in four runs and Alec Swiger doubled and knocked in three runs to lead the Golden Bears.
Alex Shuman had a triple and single in the victory.
Caleb Jackson had a double and a RBI for Beaver Local.
Wheeling Central 19
Fairmont Senior 1
WHEELING - Wheeling Central's Michael Tighe, Josh Pawloski and Ben Duplaga each scored four goals to lead the Maroon Knights past visiting Fairmont Senior at Wheeling Island Stadium in prep lacrosse action.
Central's Conner Calmbacher netted two scores while notching single goals were Thomas Stanley, Thomas Chappelear, Matt Pleva, Justin Wilson and Patrick Hurley.
Chadd Robrecht posted the victory in goal for the Maroon Knights. Tighe contributed three assists.
Central, which improved their mark to 12-2, host Hurricane Saturday at 3 p.m. at Wheeling Island Stadium.