The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Sports

June 29, 2012

CHS takes ‘step back’

CLINTON — Clinton had a lot of things to feel good about Monday night after playing well in two Mississippi Athletic Conference softball losses to North Scott.

There wasn’t much to feel good about Thursday night after the River Queens were swept 10-3 and 18-2 by Pleasant Valley in their final MAC doubleheader of the year.

“To be honest with you, I thought we took a step back from the North Scott games,” Clinton assistant coach Pete Tanzillo said. “The way we played against North Scott — the fire and passion we showed — we lost, but North Scott earned everything in that game.

“But we came out (Thursday) and we were just flat. Playing against PV, there's no room for error.”

Pleasant Valley set the tone early. Sydney Dwyer led off the game with a triple and scored on single by Maddie Reynolds. The next batter Chloe Miller tripled in Reynolds and scored on an error by Clinton catcher Erika Hammond to give the Spartans a 3-0 lead after the first three batters.

Pleasant Valley batted around in the third inning, scoring five runs — only one was earned against Clinton pitcher Halee Vicks — to take an 8-0 lead.

“Halee has gone through some ups and downs this year, but (Thursday), I thought she pitched really well,” Tanzillo said. “There were some mistakes behind her. Not to knock the team, but there were some mistakes here and there that kind of put their runs on the board. But she pitched a full game, so give her credit for that. She showed toughness.”

Dwyer led off the sixth inning with a walk, stole second and advanced to third on a groundout. After Miller walked, the Spartans attempted a double steal. Clinton shortstop Monique Harris tagged out Miller, but Dwyer scored easily to put Pleasant Valley ahead 9-0.

The River Queens — who had three hits through the first six innings — got on the board in the sixth. Harris led off with a double and advanced to third on a wild pitch. After an out and a walk to Hammond, Sydney Davis hit a grounder back to Pleasant Valley pitcher Lexi Spelhaug. Spelhaug throw home, but Harris beat the play for Clinton’s first run. Hammond advanced to third on the play.

Kayla Altemeier flew out to center and Hammond tried to score. Spartans catcher Haley Smith had the ball in plenty of time, but Hammond’s slide jarred the ball loose.

Hailey Duwa homered in the top of the seventh to put the Spartans ahead 10-2.

Liz Wilke led off the bottom of the seventh with a walk, advanced on a groundout and scored on a single by Keirstyn Davis.

In Game 2, Pleasant Valley scored twice in the top of the first on a two-run home run by Holly Hoelting, but this time Clinton came back right away.

Taylor Altemeier doubled to lead off the inning and went to third on a passed ball. Harris knocked her in with a single and stole second. Keirstyn Davis then hit an infield single, and an error by the Spartans’ second baseman allowed Harris to score.

That was all that Clinton would get.

Pleasant Valley scored six runs the next inning on a solo home run by Smith, a two-run homer by Duwa and a three-run double by Hoelting. The Spartans scored two runs in the third and eight more in the fourth. In the fourth, Duwa hit a three-run home run.

Clinton had only two hits the rest of the way — singles by Keirstyn Davis and Harris.

“We showed no passion, no fire,” Tanzillo said. “We didn't have that nasty competitor's edge.”

Tanzillo, who played basketball for Ashford, said his college coach, Oliver Drake, told his team to come out swinging when it was trailing and that excited the team.

“Our girls should want to come out swinging and scoring all the time,” Tanzillo said. “But, that wasn't the case.”

Other than Harris and Keirstyn Davis, the River Queens went 1 for 10 with runners in scoring position in the doubleheader. The only hit was an infield single by Cara Brewer. Clinton went 5 for 18 with no one on base.

“I don't know want to say it's pressure, it might be lack of experience,” Tanzillo said. “We're a young team. You can give credit to the defense also. We got a hold of the ball a few times and their defense made outstanding plays.”

PLEASANT VALLEY 10, CLINTON 3

PV    305    001    1    —    10    12    1

Clinton    000    002    1    —    3    6    2

Lexi Spelhaug (7 ip, 6 h, 3 r, 2 er, 4 bb, 4 so) and Haley Smith; Halee Vicks (7 ip, 12 h, 10 r, 5 er, 5 bb, 3 so) and Erika Hammond. Multiple hits — Pleasant Valley (Sydney Dwyer 3, Chloe Miller 2); Clinton (Monique Harris 2). 2B — Pleasant Valley (Miller, Holly Hoelting); Clinton (Harris). 3B — Pleasant Valley (Dwyer 2, Miller). HR — (Hailey Duwa). RBIs — Pleasant Valley (Dwyer 3, Duwa 2, Miller, Spelhaug, Maddie Reynolds); Clinton (Keirstyn Davis, Sydney Davis).

PLEASANT VALLEY 18, CLINTON 2 (4 INN)

PV    262    8    —    18    20    2

Clinton    200    0    —    2    5    2

Ashley Yattoni (4 ip, 5 h, 2 r, 1 er, 0 bb, 2 so) and Smith; Courtney Harlock (4 ip, 20 h, 18 r, 16 er, 4 bb, 1 so) and K. Davis. Multiple hits — Pleasant Valley (Duwa 4, Smith 3, Yattoni 3, Dwyer 2, Reynolds 2, Hoelting 2, Katie Meyer 2); Clinton (Harris 2, K. Davis 2). 2B — Pleasant Valley (Smith 2, Yattoni, Dwyer, Hoelting, Duwa); Clinton (Taylor Altemeier). HR — Pleasant Valley (Duwa 2, Hoelting, Smith). RBIs — Pleasant Valley (Duwa 6, Hoelting 6, Smith, Yattoni, Reynolds); Clinton (Harris).

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