Clare, Harrison softball split

Clare and Harrison split a pair of Jack Pine Conference softball games Tuesday night, with Clare winning game one 2-1 and Harrison winning game two 8-2.
The Pioneers scored one run apiece in the first two innings to pull ahead 2-0, with Harrison only scoring one run in the bottom of the fourth.
Katya Halfman was the winning pitcher for Clare, tossing seven innings, giving up one run on five hits, six strikeouts and one walk.
Allison Lipovsky was the hard-luck loser for the Hornets, pitching seven innings, giving up two earned runs and striking out 12 batters.
Melissa Benchley and Mckenzie Thayer had the only two hits of the game for Clare, with Emily Gillespie getting two for Harrison and Haley Sulla, Hillary Brewer and Savanna Duggan all adding one hit.
“We caught a couple of tough breaks and stranded nine runners on base,” Harrison head coach Matthew Cooper said. “We were close a couple of times but just couldn’t get the big hit when we needed it. Clare has a really good team and Halfman kept us off balance the first game.”
Harrison picked up an 8-2 win in game two, behind a strong performance by Lipovsky. Lipovsky finished with seven innings pitched, giving up two earned runs on five hits, 11 strikeouts and one walk.
Halfman was chased out of the game in the first inning, suffering the loss for the Pioneers while Ashley Petree came in relief and struck out three batters.
Taylor Bondie had three hits to lead Harrison, Lipovsky had two hits and two RBI, Katelyn Sherrick, Sulla and Gillespie all had hits.
Thayer had two hits for Clare, Courtney English, Melissa Benchley and Laura Walton all had one hit.
“I was very proud of my team for battling back in the second game and getting the split,” Cooper said. “Defensively that is as good as a team we’ve played all season.”
Clare played at Ogemaw Heights on Tuesday, plays in the Lakeview tournament on Saturday and host Gladwin on Tuesday.
Harrison played at Meridian on Thursday, plays Meridian on Thursday at competes in the Grayling tournament on Saturday.

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