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Blazers' Mehaffie finds her groove

April 13, 2006|by JACK HILL III / Staff Correspondent

SMITHSBURG - Clear Spring pitcher Christina Mehaffie was looking for improvement Wednesday and she found it.

Mehaffie gave up no earned runs, no walks and only five hits in seven innings to help the Blazers edge Smithsburg 5-3 in an MVAL Antietam softball game.

"I was surprised," Mehaffie said. "This Monday (in a 16-5 loss to North Hagerstown), I had a big letdown. I didn't want to make the same mistakes that I made on Monday. I just wanted to throw strikes. I was glad that I was able to get the ball into the strike zone."

Mehaffie retired the final seven batters and 11 of the last 12 to improve her pitching record to 3-4.

"Today was Christina Mehaffie's day," Clear Spring coach Ron Baker said. "She didn't walk a batter. Coach Simmons was calling location and she threw it where it had to be. When you have good pitching, you have a chance to win."

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Smithsburg pitcher Bethany Garnand allowed only two earned runs in seven innngs.

Ashley Shaff and Tiffany Cooper led Clear Spring (3-4, 2-3) with two hits each.

Clear Spring got on the scoreboard first in the top of the second. Shaff led off with a double to center, Cooper reached on an infield single and both scored on three wild pitches to give the Blazers a 2-0 lead.

Smithsburg (2-5, 1-4) scored three runs in the bottom of the second to go in front, 3-2.

With one out, Bethany Garnand reached on an infield error and advanced to third on a double to left by Christie Ball. Garnand scored and Ball moved to third when Dana Diehl reached on an infield error. Ball came home on Erika Mong's RBI groundout, and Becky Rishell singled to right to drive in Diehl.

The Blazers answered with two runs in the third to take the lead for good at 4-3.

With one out, Brittany Lady singled to center. Kayla McCarty followed with an infield grounder. But the throw sailed past the first baseman into right field. On the play, Lady was ruled out due to interference on the Clear Spring coach. However, McCarty was able to run all the way around the bases to score the tying run. Shaff walked, stole second, went to third on a throwing error and scored on an infield single by Cooper.

The Blazers scored their final run in the fifth. Maggie Wolford reached on an error, stole second and scored on a single to center by Shaff.

Kasie Beaver had two stolen bases for the Leopards.

"We just couldn't get our hits together at the right time," Smithsburg coach Brian Getz said. "We left three runners in scoring position. We made three errors and three of their five runs were unearned. But we'll be all right."

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