Clay City's Tasha Collenbaugh (right) delivers a strikeout pitch during Monday's loss to Shakamak. Collenbaugh struck out 12 in the game.
Clay City freshman pitcher Tasha Collenbaugh struck out six of the first eight Shakamak Lakers she faced Monday, but control problems ultimately got the best of her.
The Lady Eels posted an impressive showing against one of the area's most feared softball programs, falling just short of a major upset over defending sectional champs Shakamak. Collenbaugh fanned 12 in the game, her second-ever pitching appearance in an organized softball game.
But she also surrendered a dozen walks, the last of which scored the game-winning run for a 5-4 Shakamak victory.
First-year Clay City Coach Roger Rhodes may have been frustrated with the way the Eels lost, but he didn't fail to notice their solid showing against the heavily-favored Lakers.
"We played a pretty decent game," he said. "We just let that one slip away."
Collenbaugh stymied the Lakers lineup in the early going, pitching two hitless innings to start the game. The Eels drew first blood in the contest, taking a 1-0 lead on an RBI single by Chelsea Hanes in the second.
But the Lakers would take control in the third. Shakamak second-baseman Brandi Ashcraft laced a one-out single to right field, and Collenbaugh walked three of the next four hitters to push Ashcraft across the plate. The Lakers took a 3-1 lead when a bloop single by Leigh Davis scored Megan Netherlain and Annie Strahla.
Clay City would respond in the sixth, as Shakamak hurler Heather Gilbert faced some control issues of her own.
Pitching with a 4-2 advantage, Gilbert issued one-out walks to Kristin Tyler and Lindsey Moss to place runners on first and second. Chelsea Hanes loaded the bases with a slow roller to third base that was bobbled by Davis.
When Chelsee Gerber popped out to short center, Rhodes called upon senior reserve catcher Kylee Knox to pinch hit. Knox responded with a two-out, two-run double to right that scored Tyler and Moss and tied the game 4-4.
But Collenbaugh gave up three bases on balls in the seventh, tallying one final strikeout before forcing the game-winning Lakers run across the plate.
- JV results
The Lady Eels junior varsity fared much better against the Lakers. Tyler and Moss shared pitching duties as Clay City punished Shakamak for thirteen runs, pulling out of Jasonville with a 13-4 victory.
Clay City 4, Shakamak 5
2B-- CC (Knox). SB-- CC (Baumgartner).