It was a drama filled afternoon for the Clipper baseball squad as they were able to sweep the Lake Center Christian Tigers in doubleheader action at Firestone Park. The Clipper’s used a 5 run 7th inning to top the Tigers 6-5 in game one and outlasted Lake Center in 8 innings 6-5 in game two.
Game one saw Columbiana go up against Tiger ace James Kontur. Kontur was excellent through six innings holding the Clipper bats at bay giving up 1 run on 3 hits while striking out 11. With the score at 5-1 heading into the bottom of the seventh, Columbiana was able to put together a furious rally for the win. Josh Herbert started things off with a single and was followed by a Vince Vivo single to left that was misplayed by the left fielder allowing pinch runner Zane Adkins and Vivo to advance an extra base. With runners on second and third, the Clippers got their second run on a wild pitch making the score 5-2. Seth Ross then walked putting runners on the corners for Columbiana. Leadoff hitter Dylan Davin hit a sacrifice fly to center that scored Dustin Bennett who was running for Vivo. With one out, Mitch Davidson was hit with a 1-2 pitch putting runners on 1st and 2nd for Keenan Green, with the Clippers down 5-3. Green lined a pitch down the right field line resulting in a 2 run triple to tie the score. With the infield in Nate Armstrong singled in Green for the 6-5 Clipper victory.
AJ Perkins earned the victory pitching the final frame giving up 1 unearned run while striking out 2 and walking 2. Zach Fahs and Jake Clark also pitched for Columbiana.
In game two the Clippers led for the majority of the game. With two outs in the third, Ross got things started with a single and moved to second when the left fielder misplayed a Dylan Davin fly ball. Davidson followed with a single that got by the right fielder scoring Ross from 2nd and Davin from 1st. In the fourth inning, the Clippers plated another run when Josh Herbert knocked in Tim Davin with an RBI single. Davin had reached with a triple to right earlier in the inning. The score remained 3-0 until the Tigers were able to add a run in the 5th and the 6th. Columbiana fought back though in the bottom of the sixth scoring two while building a 5-2 lead heading into the final frame. Lake Christian managed to scrape across 3 runs in the seventh to tie the game. After each team traded 1-2-3 innings it was up to the Clippers to produce late inning heorics again. The bottom of the 8th started with a single by Green. Armstrong then sacrificed him to second and the Tigers followed with an intentional walk of Tim Davin. After an errant pickoff throw that put runners on second and third for Columbiana the Tigers walked Josh Herbert with 1 out. Following a strikeout of Perkins, Vivo took the first pitch he saw and hit it to right for the game winning single.
Perkins also picked up the win in game two, pitching 2 innings giving up 2 runs (1 earned) on 3 hits while striking out 2. Davidson started the game off pitching 4 scoreless innings and Brandon Johnston added 2 innings himself.
The wins put the Clippers record at 10-5 with a trip to Leetonia coming on Monday. Victories over the Bears on Monday and Tuesday would clinch at least a share of the ITCL White crown for Columbiana. First pitch is scheduled for 5:00 pm.