Logan Martin

Logan Martin went six innings for Wellston during its Wednesday loss to Minford.

CHILLICOTHE — Before its game against Minford in the Division III district semifinals last Wednesday, Wellston had every reason to be confident.

Throughout most of its season, Wellston built up a strong case to make a deep run in the postseason. It had strung together an 11-game win streak during the regular season, and had forged itself into one of the most indomitable teams in the Tri-Valley Conference.

Even when they reached the postseason, the Golden Rockets faced little resistance. They powered through their previous two opponents and took the sectional crown for themselves.

But Wellston finally met its match in the district semifinals. It couldn’t muster enough offensive power to match Minford, and it fell 3-1 in Paints Stadium in Chillicothe last Tuesday.

The Golden Rockets had been silent for almost the entire game. They didn’t score until the top of the fourth inning when they managed to bring a run home on an error, and even that rally was short-lived. That run was the only run they would score all game, and no batter recorded more than one hit. Only four of the Golden Rockets managed to get a hit at all.

The Falcons, on the other hand, had no problem racking up runs from the get-go. They scored in the bottom of the first inning after an infield single to take the early lead.

Pitcher Logan Martin tried to hold Minford at bay. The sophomore remained on the mound for a full six innings and even managed to strike out four and walk just one batter. But that walk came at the worst possible time. Martin’s only walk of the night came after Minford had reloaded the bases following an infield single that scored another run.

Despite his best efforts on the mound, Martin was overwhelmed by the Falcons. He allowed eight hits during his time on the mound, and those eight hits were what the Falcons needed to steal the win away.

The Golden Rockets had no response. Their offense had gone cold. They weren’t able to string hits together, and they were forced to leave Paints Stadium empty handed.

Wellston’s season may have ended in heartbreak in the district semifinals, but it’s not a season worth forgetting. The Golden Rockets recovered from a shaky start to piece together a win streak its opponents struggled to break. They managed to secure a sectional title after a pair of impressive wins, and became a feared team in the TVC-Ohio.

Sure, it’s not the ending Wellston wanted. But all good things must come to an end. Wellston had a chance to survive for another few days, but it wasn’t able to match Minford blow-for-blow.

Now, the Golden Rockets have a chance to regroup. Their roster is young and has a myriad of young talent ready to take the reins. Almost two-thirds of the roster were underclassmen this season, and those underclassmen are bound to improve with age. If they reached the district semifinals this season, the Golden Rockets have a chance to reach further in the next few seasons.

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