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WYTHEVILLE –– Galax avenged its first district loss in years Thursday, coming from behind to defeat Fort Chiswell 3-1 in a playoff for the Mountain Empire District regular season soccer championship at George Wythe High School.
The Maroon Tide, which finished the 2008 season as the Group A state runner-up, fell behind early but bounced back with goals from Jorge Mendez, Edu Rojas and Ismael Hernandez to improve to 11-2-2 on the season.
Galax will open MED tournament play Tuesday against the winner between Grayson County and Bland County in the semifinals at Fort Chiswell.
Grayson County 12, Bland County 0 (5 innings): It took a day longer than they had hoped, but the Blue Devils wrapped up their 17th straight MED regular season championship by pasting the Bears Thursday in Bastian.
Grayson County, which lost to Narrows late Wednesday night, bounced back despite the quick turnaround, scoring eight runs in the top of the first. Willie DeBord ripped a two-run home run while Tyler Rutherford had an RBI double and a two-run single in the first.
Rutherford was 3-for-3 on the day with a pair of doubles. Jessup Lambert earned the win, striking out 10 and walking none in a complete game one-hitter.
The Blue Devils will host the MED tournament and take on the winner between Bland County and Narrows on Tuesday at 5 p.m.
TRACK & FIELD
Southwest District: Matt Coble of Carroll County won a pair of events in the Southwest District championships Wednesday at Abingdon High School.
Coble, a senior, won the 800 meters with a time of 2 minutes, 6.64 seconds, and followed that up with a title in the 3200 meters, crossing in 10:42.54.
Hunter Grubb placed third in the shot and Alex Quesenberry took home third place in the discus as the Cavaliers finished third in the boys’ team standings behind Abingdon and Marion.
Coble, Grubb and Quesenberry will advance to the Region IV meet, as will Eric Marshall, who placed fifth in the 400.
Casey Lawson and Felicia Combs advanced to the regionals in the 3200 by placing fourth and sixth, respectively.
Richlands 8, Carroll County 3: The Blue Tornado opened up a 7-0 lead as the Cavaliers wrapped up their Southwest District schedule with a loss Thursday in Hillsville.
Four errors, a walk and two singles led to a six-run fourth inning for Richlands, which will play Tazewell today in a playoff for the regular season championship.
Carroll County, which will take the No. 3 spot, scored all its runs in the sixth on a Lillie Kimble RBI double and a two-run single from Lexi Hodge.
Cassie Ringstaff, Holly Bandy and Evan Ferrell had two hits each for Richlands. Kimble was 2-for-3 for the Cavaliers while Rebecca Thomas struck out 14 in a losing effort.
Giles 4, Galax 3: Chantasy Cottrell scored a pair of goals for the Maroon Tide, but Galax wasn’t able to pull off its first win of the year, falling to the Spartans in a nondistrict match Thursday in Pearisburg.
Sara Stallings and Ciara Meredith scored two goals apiece for Giles (4-7).
Galax will next see action in the Region C tournament the week of May 25.