CLAY CITY -- The Clay City Eels got hammered pretty good, 15-2, in the opening game of a softball doubleheader Wednesday evening with the visiting Sullivan Golden Arrows. Sullivan completed the sweep with a 9-6 victory in game two.
But in game two, the Eels competed and battled back from a six-run deficit and had a chance to tie the score in the seventh inning. That was a good sign to Murphy.
"[The Eels] get their heads down as soon as they make a mistake. They get discouraged. But the [second] game they really kept their heads up and knew they could battle back and that helped a lot," Murphy said.
Sullivan (4-1) put three hits together with four Clay City errors to take a 4-0 lead in the first game. The Eels made seven fielding errors in the game and managed just three hits against Sullivan's Nikki Vail.
Singles by Chelsee and Cameron Gerber and Kylee Knox accounted for the Eels' hitting.
"I think the main thing is we haven't been coming ready to play. As soon as we got down here [to the field] I told the girls you better be ready to play. It looked like the other team didn't want to be here, but it was us who didn't want to be here. The second game, we picked it up a lot. It was good," Murphy said.
Clay City (0-3) got on the scoreboard first in game two. Chelsee Gerber, Emily Reed and Loni Rhodes led off the bottom of the first inning with three straight hits. Gerber scored the run.
Sullivan took the lead for good with a four-run second inning, an error and two-out double by Ashley Wolfe starting the rally for the Golden Arrows.
But Clay City joined the battle, scoring in the bottom of the second.
Kayla Withrow reached base while trying to sacrifice a runner to second and scored on Gerber's two-out single.
The Eels' third run came in the fifth when Gerber reached base on an error and scored on Rhodes' two-out double.
Sullivan's Reva LeDune appeared to put the game out of reach in the sixth inning with a grand slam over the right-center field fence, giving the Golden Arrows a 9-3 lead.
But Clay City came back with three runs in the bottom of the sixth without a hit. The Eels took advantage of three Sullivan fielding errors and wild pitches to score, closing the gap to 9-6.
Clay City got in position to tie the contest in the bottom of the seventh, but couldn't get the runs home. Angie Camp led off with a single and one out later Knox singled. Knox was put out on a force play at second, but Camp was on third and Kayla Baumgartner was on first and the tying run came to the plate. The game ended with a strike out.
Gerber and Rhodes led the Eels' attack with two hits each.
Vail and Helton; Rhodes, Reed (4) and Camp, Knox (4). W -- Vail. L --
Rhodes. LOB -- Sul 8, CC 4. 3B -- LeDune.
Hoke, LeDune (6), Vail (7) and Burris, Helton (6); Rhodes and Knox. W
-- Hoke. L -- Rhodes. LOB -- Sul 4, CC 8. HR -- LeDune. 2B -- Burris,
Next game: Sullivan (4-1, 1-1 in WIC) travels to Union Dugger on
Friday, while Clay City (0-3) travels to White River Valley on Monday.