Second base was a busy spot in Friday’s Botetourt/River baseball game. Above, River’s Luke Harman slides under the tag of LB’s Ty Maust, while below, James River second baseman Jonathan Perry tags out Maust trying to steal. Photos by Brian Hoffman

Lord Botetourt snapped a 4-4 tie with three runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to defeat James River Friday. The Cavaliers took a 7-4 win in Daleville in the first of two meetings between the Botetourt County rivals.

LB led 4-2 after three innings, but the Knights cut the lead to one with a run in the fifth. Then, in the top of the sixth, Luke Harman singled through the third-short hole to drive in a run and tie the game at 4-4.

Andrew Harless relieved Landen Horton on the mound for River to start the bottom of the sixth, and he got a fly out to start the inning. However, Ethan Humbert followed with a double, and he scored on Drew Bond’s single. After a ground out, Hunter Dakota was hit by a pitch, and Patrick Kepler followed with a two-run double for some insurance.

Kepler pitched the final three innings for LB to pick up the win, allowing two hits. Alex Dunn pitched the first four innings and struck out four. Harless took the loss for River after Horton pitched the first five innings, fanning six.

“Landen battled the whole time,” said River coach Harry Falls.

Harman and Kavin Vest had two hits each for the Knights. Kepler, Humbert and Ty Maust all had two hits for LB.

With the win Botetourt improved to 2-1 overall. On Tuesday, March 21, the Cavs dropped an 8-2 game to Salem High at Kiwanis Field in Salem. LB led 2-1 into the sixth but Salem scored seven unearned runs in the bottom of the sixth to blow the game open. Dakota Duke was the tough-luck loser for the Cavaliers despite allowing just one earned run.

Offensively, Maust had three hits and Caleb Franklin was two-for-three with a double.  Botetourt had eight hits as a team.

The loss dropped River to 1-2, and on Monday the Knights fell to 1-3 as they were shut out at Riverheads, 4-0. Harman pitched well despite taking the loss, fanning four. The game was stopped in the top of the sixth inning due to rain.

LB was scheduled to play at Northside Tuesday while River was rained out of a game with Parry McCluer. On Thursday the Cavaliers are at William Fleming and River goes to Radford.