Edison stays patient, pulls away from Cambridge in 4A semi

STRONG PERFORMANCE — Edison starting pitcher George Ash delivers during the first inning of Saturday’s OVAC Class 4A semifinal against Cambridge at Jefferson Lake State Park. (Photo by Andrew Grimm)

RICHMOND — In a tight baseball game, capitalizing on the mistakes of one’s opponent is vital.

The Edison baseball team, the No. 2 seed, did in the sixth inning of Saturday’s OVAC Class 4A semifinal, utilizing a pair of costly errors by No. 3 seed Cambridge to pull away for a 6-0 victory at Jefferson Lake State Park.

“I’m glad we got it done today,” Edison head coach Mike Collopy said. “Cambridge is a really good ball club. We were able to take advantage of some things that they did and that is just kind of how baseball goes sometimes.

“We are very lucky to get out of here with a win.”

The onslaught came after a 52-minute rain delay had halted the action before the bottom of the fifth inning. George Ash shook off the delay and finished a complete game shutout, working out of a jam in the sixth inning, then working a 1-2-3 seventh — all fly outs to centerfield — to send Edison (12-2) to Friday’s title game at the I-470 complex in Wheeling.

“It was kind of an odd day,” Collopy said. “Our kids showed a lot of mental toughness. It’s hard when you get in the flow of the game and you have an hour delay. George pitched his butt off and our guys made plays when we needed to. Anybody that has ever pitched would tell you that, when you’re in a rythm and there’s a pause, it’s very tough. George is very competitive and there is nothing that you can throw at him that he’s going to be afraid of.”

Edison, the defending champions in 4A, will face the winner of No. 4 seed St. Clairsville and No. 1 seed Meadowbrook. That semifinal takes place on Monday after being postponed on Saturday.

The Wildcats committed four errors in the game, including one each in the first and second innings, but the Bobcats (11-6) could not take advantage — and it proved costly.

“That’s the game of baseball,” Cambridge head coach Jamaal Lowery said. “You look up at the scoreboard and they ended up with four errors and we had two, but they scored on our two.”

Trent Valentine had a solid game going into the sixth before the costly errors put a damper on his team’s bid.

“Our pitcher did what he was supposed to do,” Lowery said. “He threw strikes and was around the zone all game long. We have to play better defense behind him.”

Lowery did not make the delay into an excuse.

“It was a brutal delay, but it is what it is,” he said. “They had to play in the same circumstances.”

Brennan Scott opened the scoring in the third inning, reaching base after a third strike in the dirt bounced over the backstop. He then scored from third on a sacrifice fly by Ryan Higgs.

The score remained 1-0 until after the delay, most of which was spent working on the field once the rain stopped. Ash and Andrew Kinney singled to start the sixth and both scored on separate errors for a 3-0 lead.

Riley Watson and Noah Woods, who reached on those errors, scored on a passed ball and a Scott sacrifice fly to add to the lead, before Sinicropi singled and scored on a Higgs single.

“That was a very good pitcher we faced,” Collopy said of Valentine. “We were able to put the bat on the ball later in the game and scratch out some runs.”

UP NEXT

Cambridge: Hosts Marietta on Wednesday.

Edison: Was slated to play Wheeling Central Monday, but with it playing its OVAC semifinal on Monday, the Wildcats are back in action Tuesday at Vaccaro Field for a meeting with Catholic Central.

(Grimm can be reached at agrimm@heraldstaronline.com)

OVAC 4A Tournament

No. 2 Edison 6, No. 3 Cambridge 0

Cambridge 0-0-0 0-0-0 0 — 0-3-2

Edison 0-0-1 0-0-5 x — 6-7-4

CAMBRIDGE (11-6): T. Valentine (LP, 6IP, 6R, 4ER, 7H, 4K, 3BB) and Brumfield.

EDISON (12-2): Ash (WP, CG, 0R, 3H, 2K, 1BB) and Higgs.

TWO OR MORE HITS: Cambridge none; Edison (Sinicropi 2, Higgs 2, Ash 2). DOUBLES: Cambridge 1 (T. Valentine); Edison 1 (Higgs). TRIPLES: none. HOME RUNS: none. RBIs: Cambridge none; Edison 2 (Higgs, Scott).

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