MEDFORD — Brandon Lupton came through with a clutch hit and Justin James smothered an Ashland rally in the seventh inning as South Medford wrapped up its regular season with a 5-4 come-from-behind victory over Ashland at Harry & David Field.
After back-to-back hits by Eric Wallan and Cole Carder in the fifth against Ashland starter Steen Fredrickson, Lupton poked a single through the right side of the infield to score both and tie the game at 4-4. South Medford (15-10), which has won four straight, then took the lead in the sixth when a hit by Will Cooney followed by an error in the outfield allowed Austin White to score the go-ahead run.
In the seventh, Bryce Rogan's two-out single followed by a fielding error gave the Grizzlies (17-7) new life, but with the tying run on second James induced a 6-3 ground out by Carter Glick.
Tommy Hulick had a two-run double and Eric Carlson went 2-for-4 with a run to lead Ashland. Hulick's hit to left-center came with two outs and allowed Ashland to tie the game at 2-2.
The Grizzlies took the lead in the fifth, scoring on a sacrifice fly by Rogan and an RBI single by freshman Nick Sanderson.
Fredrickson gave up five runs, four earned, in six innings of work. He struck out four and walked one.
South Medford starter Caleb Bell surrendered one earned run on three hits in four innings. He struck out four without a walk.
Ashland wraps up its regular season Saturday with a doubleheader at Eagle Point. The Grizzlies need to split with the Eagles in order to clinch the Southern Oregon Hybrid 5A.
Ashland 000 220 0 — 4 7 4
South Medford 200 021 x — 5 7 3
Fredrickson and Glick; Bell, Carle (5), James (7) and White. W — Carle. L — Fredrickson (5-4). 2B — A: Scott, Hulick; SM: Carder, Breeze.