TImes Sports Editor
CLAY CITY -- Five innings went by in Monday's Tri-River Conference battle between Union and Clay City before the Eels figured out what they needed to do to grab a lead against the Bulldogs.
Simply put the ball in play.
Clay City trailed the entire game before the fateful sixth inning when it scored four runs aided by four Union errors on the way to a 5-4 win.
The Bulldogs kept the Eels in check over the first five frames by striking out 12 Clay City batters while allowing no hits.
In the sixth inning however, Kayla Baumgartner laid down a bunt that was fielded and the throw to first shot into rightfield for a two-base error. She would score shortly afterward on a wildpitch to get Clay City within 3-2.
Clay City pitcher Shelby Targett hit a grounder to shortstop and Jessica Fettig's error allowed Targett to reach safely as Jackson scored. Pinch runner Karen Treadway scored on a second wildpitch.
For the Bulldogs, the fifth inning damage included four runs allowed on just two hits, four errors and two wildpitches.
A 3-1 Union lead had devolved into a 5-3 Clay City advantage.
In its final at-bat, Union's Ashli Scott walked and Tawni Scott doubled her in, but Targett got a strikeout of Fettig to finish off a 5-4 TRC victory for the Eels.
Union gained the initial lead during the initial inclement weather that included some pre-game hail followed by a chilly rain in the first inning.
Megan Gambill led off the game with a ringing double and, following a walk to Ashli Scott, Tawni Scott's first double scored both runners.
The Eels countered with their first run when Tasha Collenbaugh reached on a leadoff walk and came home after a stolen base to third and an error on the throw.
The pitchers held the opposing offenses at bay over the next four innings while the Eels left three runners on base.
Scott finished with 13 Clay City strikeouts while Targett battled through five walks allowed while not giving up another run into the seventh inning.
Clay City improves to 10-2 overall and hosts South Putnam today at 4:30 p.m.
At Clay City
2B -- Un (Scott 2, Gambill).