HJ - CHS Softball M Sunderman slides home

Hitting the dirt for Clarinda is Maddie Sunderman as she slides into home ahead of the tag Thursday, June 6, in the second game a doubleheader against Harlan. The Cardinals were edged 9-6 in the game after suffering a 14-0 loss in the first game of the twin bill. (Herald-Journal photo by Joe Moore)

Clarinda mounted comeback bids in both its games Saturday, June 8, during a tournament at Creston. However, the Cardinals fell a little short as they suffered losses to Nodaway Valley and Central Decatur.

The Cardinals opened the tournament against Nodaway Valley and were handed a 5-4 loss by the Wolverines.

Nodaway Valley opened the scoring with two runs in the third inning and pushed the advantage to 5-0 in the fourth inning. Clarinda battled back with four runs in the top of the fifth inning, but could not produce the tying run in the top of the sixth inning.

“We just couldn’t finish the comeback. The game was called due to the time limit and we didn’t get to play the seventh inning,” Clarinda coach Seth Allbaugh said.

Addison Shane helped lead the rally as she finished with a single and a double to go along with one run batted in (RBI) and scored one run. Makayla Fichter also finished with one hit, one stolen base and one RBI.

Bradlie Wilmes was credited with the other Clarinda RBI. Kennedy Reed followed with a single and a run scored, while Bryn Morgenstern turned in a single and a stolen base. Maddie Sunderman also swiped one bag and scored one run.

Aziah Smalley was charged with the loss despite the fact only one of the five runs scored by Nodaway Valley was earned. Smalley held the Wolverines to four hits and two walks, while striking out one.

“Aziah pitched a great game, but our defense let us down. We committed too many errors and they came at critical times as we gave up some crucial runs,” Allbaugh said.

Clarinda then squared off against Central Decatur and dropped a 7-4 decision.

Clarinda took a quick 1-0 lead with a run in the top of the first inning, but Central Decatur responded with two runs in the bottom of the second inning and another run in the third.

Clarinda struck for two more runs in the top of the fourth inning to tie the game at 3, only to see Central Decatur edge back on top 5-3 in the home half of the inning. The Cardinals cut the deficit to 5-4 in the fifth inning, but Central Decatur sealed the win with two final runs in the bottom of the fifth.

“They gave us a chance to come back at the end and tie it, but we couldn’t get the hits when we needed them,” Allbaugh said.

Wilmes paced the Cardinals with two hits, two runs scored and one stolen base. Shane added a single and one RBI, while Fichter and Aliyah St. Romain knocked in the other two runs for Clarinda.

Reed turned in two hits, one run scored and one stolen base. Jordyn McQueen was credited with one hit, one stolen base and one run score.

Jillian Graham came off the bench to collect a hit. Morgenstern also swiped one bag in the contest.

Hailee Knight was in the circle to start the game and took the loss. She allowed seven runs, three earned, over four innings on six hits and five walks. She also posted four strikeouts.

Smalley came on to pitch the final two innings and held Central Decatur scoreless. She gave up one hit and one walk, while fanning one.

Clarinda opened the week Tuesday, June 4, at Red Oak. The Tigers emerged with a 10-0 win in five innings.

The Cardinals stayed close early on as they only trailed 3-0 heading to the bottom of the fifth inning. However, Chloe Johnson connected on a two-run homer to spark a seven run inning for the Tigers that ended the game by the 10-run rule.

“We played well the first four innings. We hit the ball hard, but it was just right at people. We were not able to get as many hits as we would like,” Allbaugh said.

The Cardinals were limited to four hits in the game. McQueen accounted for the only extra base hit on a double.

Wilmes, Shane and Fichter each singled to account for the other three Clarinda hits.

Smalley was tagged with the loss as she surrendered eight earned runs over four and two-thirds innings of work. Smalley was touched for 13 hits and issued four walks, while posting three strikeouts.

Clarinda returned to action Thursday, June 6, as the Cardinals hosted a doubleheader with Harlan. The Cyclones spoiled the night as they won both games by scores of 14-0 in five innings and 9-6.

Morgan Schaben started the first game for the Cyclones. She stifled Clarinda as she allowed only one hit to Shane and fanned nine over five innings.

“She’s just a dominate pitcher. She is one of, if not the best, pitchers we’ll face all year long. They got on us early and hit the ball hard. There was not a lot we could do to slow them down,” Allbaugh said.

In the second game, Clarinda went on top 1-0 in the second inning. The Cardinals then regained a 3-1 edge with a pair of runs in the bottom of the fifth.

However, Harlan responded with five runs in the top of the sixth inning. The Cyclones tacked on three more runs in the top of the seventh inning to push the advantage to 9-3.

Still, the Cardinals refused to go down quietly. Clarinda struck for three runs and had the tying run at the plate with only one out in the inning.

With the game in jeopardy, Harlan brought in Schaben to slam the door. She rose to the challenge by striking out the final two hitters to end the game.

“We showed good fight in that game. After getting beat like we did in the first game we could have folded, but instead we came out fighting and played well for the most part,” Allbaugh said.

Morgenstern led the charge with three hits, two RBI and one run scored. Kylie Shackelford also posted three hits and one RBI.

Shane delivered a single and a double as she plated one run. Wilmes tallied one hit, one RBI and one run. St. Romain was credited with one hit and one run scored.

Sunderman crossed the plate twice, while Reed scored once in the game. Sunderman also picked up one stolen base.

Smalley went the distance and was charged with the loss. She allowed eight earned runs on 12 hits and one walk, but notched seven strikeouts.

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