RACINE, Ohio — Better late than never.
The Southern softball team broke open a tightly-contested one-run game with five scores over the final three innings Monday night during a 6-0 victory over visiting River Valley in a non-conference matchup at Star Mill Park in Meigs County.
The Lady Tornadoes (14-7) took a 1-0 advantage in the bottom of the second, then plated a run apiece in the fourth and fifth frames as the hosts claimed a 3-0 cushion through five complete. SHS then benefited from a trio of unearned runs in the sixth before wrapping up the shutout triumph.
Southern claimed its early 1-0 advantage as a two-out single by Sydney Cleland allowed Sabra Bailey to score in the second. Katie Barton followed with an RBI-single that plated Savannah Bailey in the fourth for a 2-0 edge.
Then in the fifth, Hannah Hill scored on a one-out Brandy Porter single that gave the Purple and Gold a three-run cushion through five complete.
Cleland started the sixth with a one-out single, then Lauren Lavender entered as a courtesy runner and later scored on an error that allowed Haley Hill to reach safely. Ali Deem followed with a walk, then both Hill and Deem scored on a two-out error that allowed Paige VanMeter to reach safely for a 6-0 contest.
The Lady Raiders (8-12) got a leadoff single from Cierra Roberts in the top of the seventh, but the guests followed with three consecutive outs to wrap up the six-run outcome.
Southern outhit RVHS by an 8-5 overall margin and committed none of the two errors in the contest. SHS stranded eight runners on base, while the Lady Raiders left five on the bags.
Cleland was the winning pitcher of record after allowing five hits and a walk over seven frames while striking out two. Ashley Gilmore took the loss after surrendering six runs (three earned), eight hits and six walks over six innings while fanning two.
Porter and Cleland led the hosts with two hits apiece, while Deem, VanMeter, Barton and Sabra Bailey added a safety apiece to the triumph.
Roberts, Gilmore, Courtney Smith, Chloe Gee and Isabella Mershon had a hit each for the Lady Raiders.
Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.