Times Sports Editor
CLAY CITY -- The baseball diamond at Clay City High School doubled as the launching pad for three Eels' home runs and six extra base hits in a Tuesday victory over Cloverdale.
Tyler Bridgewater launched his fifth and sixth home runs of the season and D.J. Newton blasted one of his own and got the pitching victory against the Clovers, 14-1 in five innings.
Coach Ryan Swearingen admitted that his freshman, Bridgewater, is dialed in right now.
"Tyler was all over it tonight," said Clay City coach Ryan Swearingen of his freshman slugger. "He's been a big help to our lineup."
Newton's performance was a pretty big help as well to the Eels' cause.
He allowed just a first inning run, fueled by the Eels' only error of the game, struck out 10 Clover batters in a five-inning two hitter.
"D.J. did a great job for us tonight," said Swearingen. "It's really good to get to 10 wins this early, a lot of times it's almost sectional time before we get there."
The Eels jumped out front in the bottom of the first inning spurred by a lead off infield single by Ben Dickey.
He came around to score when an errant pickoff throw got him to third base and the relay throw across the diamond got away, allowing him to tie the game.
With one out, Bridgewater sent his first long ball over the fence to give the Eels a lead. Then back-to-back walks to Will Kennedy and Ryne Hayes resulted in an RBI double by Matt Vansickle.
"I'm glad to see Matt get going," said Swearingen. "He's really hit the ball well for us lately."
Clay City played add-on in the second inning when Bridgewater came to the plate following a sharp single by A.J. Evans.
Bridgewater launched a two-run shot to left centerfield to put the Eels ahead 5-1.
The third inning was more of the same and spelled the end for Cloverdale hurler, Kyle Martin.
Kyler Rhodes reached on another of the Clovers' eight errors in the game and came around to score when Vansickle singled him into scoring position. Gus Camp brought him home with an RBI fielder's choice grounder. Camp and Vansickle reached safely as the flip to second in an attempted force out went wide to extend the inning.
Newton doubled to the fence for an RBI and Dickey followed up with a two-run single to put the Eels up 10-1.
Newton added a two-run home run in the fourth inning as Clay City ended the game via the 10-run rule.
"We used D.J. as a second lead off hitter," said Swearingen with a smile. "We knew what he can do,"
The Eels improve to 10-5 overall and host West Vigo on Thursday night at 5 p.m.
At Clay City
2B -- CC (Evans, M.Vansickle, Newton). HR -- CC (Bridgewater 5, 6, Newton).
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