CLINTON — For a portion of the second game of Monday’s doubleheader, it looked like the Clinton softball team would break out of its drought.

But Davenport Central would go on to rally for a 5-4 victory at Chancy Park to complete the twin bill sweep.

The Blue Devils won the opener 13-2 in five innings.

“In the first game there’s no reason we should have got 10-runned,” said Clinton coach Renee Shovlain, whose team had nine errors in that contest. “Central didn’t have a dominating pitcher and we should have been able to hang with them. But we gave them five runs right off the bat, and that pretty much made the game. After that it’s tough to come back.

“In the second game we took a little stronger attitude and decided that wouldn’t happen again,” she continued. “They threw their ace in the first game and I figured as long as we put the ball in play, we’d have a chance.”

Central (4-19, 2-12 Mississippi Athletic Conference) grabbed the early lead in the second game with two runs in the top of the first, both scoring on Katie Loose’s double.

But Clinton (0-26, 0-14) roared back by scoring all its runs in the bottom of the second while sending 10 batters to the plate.

Erica Florence led off the frame with a line single to left, but was forced out when Brittany Edfors reached on a fielder’s choice.

Edfors went to second on a wild pitch and took third on Bailee Stauffer’s single up the middle. The center fielder bobbled the ball, allowing Edfors to score.

April Stark then sent a single to right, putting runners on the corners, before stealing second.

Megan Guppy followed with a grounder to the shortstop, who looked Stauffer back to third while allowing the runner to reach first.

Lea Wiersema drew the bases-loaded walk to force in a run before Clinton got its first out on a popout.

Taylor Holt and Lindsey Thornton followed with back-to-back walks to push the River Queens ahead 4-2 before Central got out of the inning.

Central bounced right back, though, scoring twice in the third inning with the aid of three hits, including an RBI triple by Allie Corbin.

The Blue Devils scored what would be the deciding run in the fourth with the aid of two Clinton errors.

The River Queens still had their chances as they loaded the bases in the fifth with one out before Lizzy Doebel escaped damage by striking out the next two Clinton batters.

The River Queens also had runners on the corners in the sixth with two out but couldn’t score.

In the seventh, Central’s Mandy Moses — the winning pitcher in the first game who entered in relief of Doebel in the sixth inning — got three straight groundouts to secure the win.

“The second game was much better for us,” said Shovlain. “But we also had a lot of missed opportunities. We had runners in scoring position who we couldn’t push across and made some mistakes on the base paths. But that’s being a young team. Until we find ways to produce runs in those situations, we’re going to come up short.”

Of the Blue Devils’ four wins on the season, all have come at Chancy. Central won a pair of games here last month to claim the title at the River Queen Tournament.

In Monday’s opener, the Blue Devils scored three runs in the first inning with the help of two Clinton errors and tacked on two more runs in the second as the River Queens committed three fielding miscues.

Clinton scored solo runs in the second and third innings.

In the second, Paige McDonnell was hit by a pitch, advanced two bases on wild pitches and scored on an error.

In the third, Wiersema led off with a walk, took second on a wild pitch, moved to third on a groundout and scored on another groundout by Florence.

But Central pounded out six runs in the fourth inning on six hits, including a two-run single by Loose, and tallied two more runs in the fifth.

Despite some wild pitches, Moses had a strong pitching outing for Central. She limited the River Queens to two hits while fanning four batters.

Shovlain cited her pitchers, Megan Osterhaus and Holt.

“The pitching is going well,” she said. “They’re throwing strikes for the most part and hitting their spots. As long as we keep the errors down and score when we have the chance, we’ll build some confidence.”

Clinton has a week off before hosting Davenport North in a doubleheader next Monday at Chancy. The first pitch is at 4:30 p.m.


Score by Innings

Central 320 62 —13 12 3

Clinton 011 00 —2 2 9

Mandy Moses and Amber Farrar. Megan Osterhaus and Lindsey Thornton.

Two or more hits—Central, Erin Valentine, Katie Loose, Allie Corbin, Farrar. 2B—Central, Mindy Moses, Corbin. RBI—Central, Valentine 2, Loose 2, Mi. Moses, Corbin 3, Farrar; Clinton, Erica Florence.


Score by Innings

Central 202 100 0 —5 8 0

Clinton 040 000 0 —4 5 4

Lizzy Doebel, Mandy Moses (6) and Katie Loose. Taylor Holt and Lindsey Thornton.

Two or more hits—Central, Katie Hoeksema, Erin Valentine, Loose 3. 2B—Central, Loose. 3B—Central, Loose, Allie Corbin. RBI—Central, Loose 3, Corbin; Clinton, Lea Wiersema, Holt, Thornton.

Records—Central 4-19, 2-12 Mississippi Athletic Conference; Clinton 0-26, 0-14. Next games—Davenport North at Clinton (DH), 4:30 p.m. July 9.

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