CLINTON — Clinton softball coach Emily Hoague is liking the way her team is hitting, despite being swept by highly-ranked Muscatine in a rescheduled doubleheader on Tuesday.
Clinton (5-21) fell in Game 1 to the Muskies 10-0, then scored a run in the first inning in Game 2 to avoid a shutout, but still lost 13-1. Both games ended in five innings.
“Muscatine is a super solid team; it doesn’t matter where you put the ball, they’re going to hit it,” Hoague said. “The fact that we played five innings in both games is good, and in Game 2, we hit much, much better.”
Anna Manjoine limited the River Queens to two hits in Game 1, while the Muskies posted 18 hits, including five extra base hits. Also, in Game 1, Rachel Beatty had four hits and the Nos. 1 and 2 hitters combined for six hits.
The two Clinton hits in Game 1 came from Allison McQuistion in the second inning and from Grace Dornbush in the fifth inning. Dornbush also pitched for the River Queens in the first game.
While the River Queens were held scoreless in the first game, the second game’s opening inning was the busiest. Cara Brewer, Sydney Davis and Brandy Peska all recorded singles to start the first inning.
McQuistion brought in Brewer on a sacrifice fly to put the River Queens on the board. They were trailing 2-1 at that point.
“They can hit, and even the umpires were saying that we were hitting,” Hoague said. “Hitting is contagious, and once somebody sees someone else hitting, they believe they can do that, too.”
Davis took the responsibility of pitching in Game 2 for Clinton. She lasted 2 2/3 innings, allowing 10 runs on eight hits. Four of those eight hits that Muscatine got while Davis was in the circle were doubles.
“It’s all about getting our girls experience,” Hoague said.