By CAREY FOX
As far as pitching goes in softball, hitting your spots is a big key to winning at the high school level.
In Monday's game against North Central, freshman hurler Tasha Collenbaugh went deep into the count against many of the T-Birds and the veteran squad was able to get to the Eels for a pair of big innings.
North Central strung together four hits and used a Clay City error in the second inning to jump out to a 4-0 advantage that T-Bird pitcher Sierra Taft wouldn't relinquish.
"We struggled some tonight," said Clay City coach Roger Rhodes. "We had one bad inning just like against Turkey Run on Saturday when we gave up four runs (in a loss)."
The Eels would narrow the gap a bit in their half of the third inning as Collenbaugh reached on a walk to leadoff the frame and then her pinchrunner stole second. Kayla Baumgartner then smacked a single deep into the hole between third and shortstop. The throw to first was a bit high and allowed the runner to score from third.
The T-Birds would get back into the act in the fourth inning starting things off with a one out single. Sierra Taft laid down a bunt that wasn't fielded cleanly and everyone was safe. Sionna Taft drew a walk to load the bases before Sam Barbee hit a single to leftfield to score Miller from third. The relay home went back to third to nail Taft for the second out.
Collenbaugh nearly got out of the inning without further damage but a two run single would put the game out of reach for the Eels, 7-1.
Clay City would add a single run in the fourth inning when Kayla Withrow singled with two outs before Kendra Roe drilled an RBI double. They would add one more run in the sixth inning on an Angie Camp single and another RBI double to centerfield.
But Clay City wasn't able to get any closer than the final four run margin.
"We hit the ball pretty decent tonight," said Rhodes. "I'll take eight hits any night, but pitching is the key, we struggled a bit."
The loss drops the Eels to 3-5 overall this season and the Eels host Linton this evening at 4:30 p.m.
North Central 7, Clay City 3
At Clay City
2B -- CC (Roe 2), NC (Hathaway, Miller). 3B -- NC (Porter).
|Collenbaugh L (2-4)||7.0||7||10||5||4|
|Sierra Taft (W)||7.0||3||8||2||6|