The James River baseball team will be playing for a spot in the Region 2A West tournament this week as the Knights compete in the Conference 38 tournament at Kiwanis Field in Salem. Semifinal action is scheduled for today.
The tournament opened Monday with a play-in game for the fourth and fifth seeds, and Martinsville edged Giles in that one, 4-3. Today Martinsville advances to a 4 p.m. game against top-seeded Glenvar and River will play the second game against Floyd County.
The championship is Thursday at Kiwanis Field and it will be important for whoever is involved. Glenvar has a regional berth in hand by virtue of winning the regular season, and if the Highlanders win the conference they’ll open the regional with a home game.
If Glenvar loses in the semifinal or final, the Highlanders are still in the regional but then the Conference 38 tournament winner will open the region with a home game. If River and Glenvar both win today, then River is guaranteed a spot in the regional, but if Glenvar loses in the semifinal, the Knights would have to win the tournament to advance.
Last Wednesday the Knights played Floyd in a regular season game and took a 5-3 win in Buffalo territory. Coulter Hodges pitched six and two-thirds innings for the win, fanning 11 and allowing just three hits. He tired in the seventh, allowing three runs, but Andrew Harless got a save by striking out the last batter.
River scored four runs in the first inning at Floyd. Luke Harman, Hodges and Harless opened the game with singles as Harless drove in two. Dalton Harper then singled and Kavin Vest knocked in two more.
On Thursday the Knights concluded the regular season with a 4-1 loss to Radford at home. Landen Horton and Harman split time on the mound as Horton was tagged with the loss despite allowing just four hits and two runs over four innings.
The Knights finished the regular season 6-11.