Despite losing 2, Clearview Clippers ready

MORNING JOURNAL/SAM GREENE Clearview’s Sarah Kaya throws a pitch during the fourth inning against Hathaway Brown on Saturday at Clearview High School.

MORNING JOURNAL/SAM GREENE Clearview's Chelsea Kincer fields a ground ball during the third inning against Hathaway Brown on Saturday.

MORNING JOURNAL/SAM GREENE Clearview's Sarah Stambol gets a single during the third inning against Hathaway Brown on Saturday.

MORNING JOURNAL/SAM GREENE Clearview's Sarah Kaya throws a pitch during the fourth inning against Hathaway Brown on Saturday.

SHEFFIELD TWP. — Clearview coach Denny Myers wants to make sure his team is ready come tournament time.

And with just a few days left before a sectional final game against Brookside, Myers scheduled Hathaway Brown and Western Reserve on Saturday for a reason — to get ready for the tournament.

“Mission accomplished,” Myers said. “We played some good teams. We lost them both, but I’d rather do that than play teams that we beat very easily and not learn anything from it.”

What the Clippers learned, according to Myers, is that they can compete with anybody despite setbacks of 4-2 and 8-5.

After falling to Hathaway Brown in the first game, the Clippers (15-8) gave the state’s second-ranked team in Division IV all they could handle.

Sarah Kaya (13-8) struck out 12 and senior Angelica Fletcher hit her first home run of her career on Senior Day with a towering two-run shot to straightaway center in the bottom of the seventh.

But it was the Blue Devils, however, who spoiled the afternoon.

Western Reserve (19-2) cranked out 10 hits, getting three from Marley Oles, who was 3-for-4 with two RBIs. April Lude (8-1), who scattered six hits and struck out four, helped her own cause by hitting a double and scoring two runs.

“We lost to a good team, a good-hitting team,” Myers said. “They’re rated second in the state for a reason in Division IV. They hit the ball hard.”

The Blue Devils also hit the ball with two outs.

Western Reserve had five, two-out hits, and scored five of its runs with two outs. The Blue Devils set that tone in the first inning, too.

After a Tory White single, Gabby Stubbs tripled to left to give the Blue Devils a 1-0 lead. Two batters later, Jenny Stubbs roped a two-out triple to center.

“That’s what we say, ‘Set the tone, be disciplined, go up there … even if we don’t score in the first couple innings at least hit the ball hard and show them that we’re here to play,’” Blue Devils coach Laura Amero said.

Clearview cut the deficit in half in the bottom of the inning on back-to-back doubles from Kaya and Sarah Stambol.

Kaya struck out the side in the second, but ran into trouble in the third.

Lude led off the inning with a double to left and hustled home when White reached on a bunt. White went to second on a sac bunt from Gabby Stubbs and scored on Jenny Stubbs’ two-out single to center to make it 4-1.

Oles’ single to right extended Western Reserve’s lead to 5-1.

“Two-out rallies are big for us,” Amero said. “We always talk about not leaving runners on, everybody going up to bat with a purpose. We keep talking about climbing the ladder, peaking at tournament (time), so I think we’re doing our job so far with that.”

Clearview scored a run each in the fifth and sixth innings to cut the deficit to 5-3. Nikki Roush’s single in the sixth drove in Kristen Teleha and almost brought home Chelsea Kincer, but a fine defensive play from right field cut the run down at the plate to end the inning.

The Blue Devils added some insurance runs in the seventh thanks to an error that started the inning.

Lude reached on an error and stole second and third before scoring on Maddie Kreitzburg’s two-out double to center. Kreitzburg scored when Jenny Stubbs reached on an error at second, later scoring on Oles’ double to center.

“It’s the little things, that’s what we keep harping a lot with our girls,” Myers said. “The little things are the difference between winning and losing. Sometimes we don’t always do the little things, but if we do the little things we’re a pretty good team.”

Those little things would’ve been big for the Clippers in the seventh, as the score could have been different when Fletcher cleared the fence in center.

“Like I tell our girls, we can compete with any team out there,” Myers said. “Sometimes we beat ourselves, but if we don’t make those mistakes we can compete with anybody out there.”

“If we go out there and play our game, we’re going to do some damage hopefully in the tournament coming up next week and see how far we can go.”

Western Reserve 8, Clearview 5

Western Reserve (19-2) 203 000 3 — 8 10 2

Clearview (15-8) 100 011 2 — 5 6 3

TWO HITS OR MORE — Western Reserve: Tory White, Jenny Stubbs, Marley Oles; Clearview: Sarah Stambol; 2B — WR: April Lude, Maddie Kreitzburg, Oles; C: Sarah Kaya, Stambol; 3B — WR: Gabby Stubbs, Jenny Stubbs; HR — C: Angelica Fletcher; WP — Lude (8-1), LP — Kaya (13-8).

@PaulBarney18

Last Updated: 5/11/2013 10:27:21 PM EST

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