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Clare softball sweeps Farwell, Thayer hits game winning homer

The Clare varsity softball team swept visiting Farwell on Tuesday night, topping the Lady Eagles 6-2 and 4-3 in Jack Pine Conference contests.

“I thought we played tough against a tough team,” Clare head coach Jeff Albert said. “We are continuing to get better as a team every time we step on the field.”

Katya Halfmann earned the win in game one, pitching seven innings, giving up two runs, one earned on six hits and four strikeouts.

Lyndsay Ruckle suffered the loss for Farwell, giving up eight hits and striking out one.

“We played well after the first could of innings,” Farwell head coach Steve Klinge said. “They hit the ball well to start the game but we played pretty well.”

Melissa Benchley went three-for-four at the plate, including a double. Lindsey Winter had two singles and an RBI.

Hannah Reger had two doubles to lead the Eagles’ offense, Chalsey Stiglich had two hits, Brooke Wartella, Kate Saupe and Sydney Hurley each had one double.

Halfmann earned the win in game two, pitching four innings of relief, giving up zero runs on two hits and three strikeouts.

Saupe took the loss for Farwell, giving up six hits and strikings out four.

Bailey Thayer broke a three all tie in the top of the sixth inning, hitting a solo home run over the right-center field fence.

Rachel Randall and Reyna Luplow added singles in the game.

“Courtney English, Thayer and Bailey Reger all were amazing on defense,” Albert said. “Nothing gets through Winter and Benchley.

For Farwell, Hurley had a triple and a single, Wartella and Reger both doubled, Caron White, Stiglich each had singles.

“We played really well and hit the ball hard all night,” Klinge said. “They play great defense and in the second game, we just didn’t get that clutch hit when we needed it. We had bases loaded a couple times and just couldn’t perform.”

Clare (14-5 overall, 6-0 JPC) hosts Merdian May 15.

Farwell (17-4. 4-2) plays at Harrison May 15.