For the Brazil Times
CLOVERDALE -- For five innings Friday, Clay City kept within striking distance on the road against Cloverdale. The Eels trailed by a single run, 1-0, for much of the game, but a hot sixth inning by Cloverdale left Clay City reeling, resulting in the Eels' first loss of the season.
Clay City pitcher Whitney Jeffers began the game strong, facing nine Cloverdale batters in the first three innings, sending each of them back to the dugout without a hit.
Cloverdale was able to get its first hit of the game in the fourth inning when Brianna Hoff hit a single. Kara Knapp hit a shot to left field to score Hoff to post the first run of the game.
Even though they trailed, Clay City continued to play strong in the field and stay within reach of Cloverdale. But everything changed in the sixth inning when the Clover bats came to life and ended any hopes that Clay City had of mounting a charge.
In the bottom of the sixth, Cloverdale rattled off four hits and scored five runs to move ahead of the Eels 6-0 and gain control of the ball game. Following a Cloverdale strikeout, Clay City took the field in hopes of getting its second win of the season.
However, as they had all evening, the Eels batters could find no answer for Cloverdale pitcher Paige Gutierrez. The senior faced four batters in the top of the seventh inning, striking out the final two to close the game. On the night, the Cloverdale pitcher recorded 14 strikeouts, while giving up four hits.
Jeffers pitched a complete game for the Eels, striking out three. Maria Walton was 1-for-2 with a single and Madison Booe went 1-for-3 with a single.
Clay City travels to the Barr-Reeve Invite this morning.
WP -- Gutierrez
LP -- Jeffers
2B -- Knapp (CHS)