The James River baseball team is the only Knights team playing over spring break this week, and the boys have their work cut out for them. River will host Staunton River in a jayvee-varsity doubleheader on Thursday in Springwood.
With school out, the jayvees will start at 1:30 p.m. Thursday with the varsity to follow at approximately 4:30 p.m. Staunton River is a Group 3A school with a strong tradition in baseball. The Golden Eagles came into the week at 5-3 playing in the tough Blue Ridge District.
James River is 3-5 after going 1-2 last week. The Knights beat Giles but lost to Parry McCluer and Glenvar.
“I feel like our schedule is as tough throughout as anyone’s,” said River coach Harry Falls. “We play some very good teams.”
River opened a busy schedule last week with an 8-4 win over Giles. Andrew Harless picked up the win on the mound in relief of Coulter Hodges, who pitched into the third. Harless went three and a third, allowing just one run before Luke Harman finished off the win by pitching the seventh.
Harman also had a good day at the plate with two hits, an RBI and a stolen base. Kavin Vest had two hits as well.
On Wednesday the Knights lost a 9-8 game to host Parry McCluer in eight innings. The game was almost called due to darkness after seven, but it was decided to play one more inning and the Blues pulled out the win.
“I was pushing the umpires to continue,” said Falls. “I thought we were going to win.”
Landen Horton pitched seven innings for River and Harman took the loss when the Blues scored in the bottom of the eighth. Horton was two-for-four at the plate with an RBI double and Zac Cahoon had two of River’s 11 hits against the Blues.
On Friday at home the Knights dropped a 6-1 decision to Glenvar. Harman and Harless split time on the mound as Glenvar broke open a 1-1 tie with a run in the fourth, three in the fifth and one in the sixth.
“We have to play better defense to be more consistent,” said Falls.
Next week the Knights will host Lord Botetourt on Wednesday, April 19.