Blue Devils season ends after fateful sixth inning

By Randy Lefko Sports Editor
Posted 6/1/22

CLERMONT - Clay High softball has been riding a strong defensive effort and wicked pitching from Gabby Ellis into the Class 4A Final Four and a scoreless game going against top-ranked Deltona High …

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Blue Devils season ends after fateful sixth inning

Posted

CLERMONT - Clay High softball has been riding a strong defensive effort and wicked pitching from Gabby Ellis into the Class 4A Final Four and a scoreless game going against top-ranked Deltona High until a dramatic sixth inning put the game at 4-0 for Deltona. Deltona (20-3) eventually won 4-0 and also won the Class 4A title with a 6-3 win over Lake Wales on Friday.

With strong defense from Clay off just three strikeouts to pitcher Gabby Ellis, Clay left six runners on base against Deltona pitcher Katie McCaw. McCaw registered seven strikeouts and just one hit; to Kendall Mann, for the game.

In that fateful sixth inning, after a run down of a long fly ball in left field by Kierstyn Mann put Deltona back in the dugout, Clay took to the bats and got baserunners in play; Kamryn Hubbard leading off with a strikeout with McKinley Bardroff up next getting a walk to bring up Ellis. Bardroff’s walk was the second of the night for McCaw with Abby Rutledge walking earlier in the game for Clay’s only two baserunners to that point. Bardroff moved to second off a steal with no throw with Ellis drawing a second walk to set up two baserunners for the Blue Devils.

Gabby Wiseman bunted Bardroff to third base and Ellis to second to set up Sydney Davis who hit a fly ball to right field to end the inning.

For Deltona, with just one hit off Ellis at the bottom of the sixth start, Ellis hit batter Emily Donahue to put her on base for just the second baserunner for Deltona. A single through the shortstop hole just out of Wiseman’s diving stab put Donahue at third base to bring coach Matt Lewis to the mound with two Deltona baserunners.

Deltona’s Sophie Strempel dropped a centerfield double just in front of Bardroff to score both baserunners and put Deltona up 2-0.

Another base hit to right field singled in one more run, 3-0.

Ellis got Deltona’s Morgan Davis to no balls, two strikes before Davis dropped another ball into centerfield just in front of Bardroff for the fourth hit in a row on Ellis. Parker got an out off a fly to second base with Adrianna Stump-Frias getting walked to load the bases for Deltona.

Deltona scored one more with a line drive into left field with Mann getting a strong throw in to get a tag to end the inning. In the final inning, Ema Martin grounded out for a second out before Kendall Mann snuck a grounder through the shortstop hole for the only hit for Clay.

Rutledge was final at bat with a right field fly ball ended the game.

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