By Kevin Colley -

It’s always special when seniors can close out their regular season slates at home out on top.

The Clay Panthers’ baseball team and the Minford Falcons’ softball team did just that on Monday evening as a total of seven seniors from the two squads collected mercy-rule victories against Symmes Valley and Eastern Brown, respectively.

Check out their efforts, along with a pair of victories from the Portsmouth tennis and Clay softball units, right here in the latest version of the Daily Times’ roundup!


Minford 19, Eastern Brown 1 (F/5)

The Minford Lady Falcons capped off a celebration of three excellent careers on Monday evening by throttling the Sardinia Eastern Brown Lady Warriors, 19-1, in a contest that was held in Minford.

Fittingly, the aforementioned trio, which included Melanie Furhmann, Ariel Kingery, and Mary Pica, put together splendid performances in their final regular season home bout donning the Minford colors.

Pica, especially, took the contest to heart, and as a result, put together a game to remember by going 3-for-3 with an astounding two home runs, eight RBI, a double, a walk, and three runs scored. Kingery, who threw five innings of two-hit, one-run softball while striking out nine Eastern Brown batters, went 2-for-3 with a home run, a walk, two RBI, and two runs scored, while Fuhrmann went 1-for-3 with a walk and two runs scored to aid the Minford offensive attack.

Brittani Wolfenbarker, Emily Shoemaker, and Hannah Tolle joined Kingery and Pica in racking up multi-hit performances, with Wolfenbarker’s 3-for-3 day with a double, three RBI, and three runs scored, Shoemaker’s 2-for-3 day with two RBI and two runs scored, and Tolle’s 2-for-2 day with a walk and two runs scored rounding out the efforts of the multi-hit performers.

Zoe Doll, Madison Sifford, MacKenzie Watters, and Marissa Watters each collected at least one hit on the evening, with Sifford blasting a three-run homer out of the park as part of a monstrous 16-run second inning. Doll went 1-for-2 with a double, a RBI, a run, and a sacrifice, while the Watters’ combined to go 2-for-3 on the evening to round out an excellent performance for the Lady Falcons.

Minford will play at Notre Dame on Wednesday evening.

Clay 9, Symmes Valley 1

The Clay Lady Panthers continued their roll inside SOC I play on Monday evening by collecting a 9-0 victory over the Symmes Valley Lady Vikings in Willow Wood to collect its 20th win of the year.

Clay, who moved to 13-0 in SOC I play with the victory, accumulated another excellent effort from Hannah Oliver — both in the circle and at the plate. Oliver, who threw a complete game on Monday evening, struck out five batters and only walked one for a five-to-one strikeout to walk ratio. The sophomore, who also allowed just two hits from the circle, led the Lady Panthers at the plate, as well, by going 4-for-4 with four RBI. None of the hits that Oliver gave up from the circle went for extra bases.

Joining Oliver in the multi-hit club was Julia Swain, Jensen Warnock, and Bre Donahoe, who combined to go 7-for-12 on the evening in the victory. Swain went 3-for-4 with a double, a RBI, and three runs scored, while Warnock and Donahoe each went 2-for-4, with the former adding a double and both players contributing a run to the table for Clay.

Shaelynn Vassar and Cassidy Wells each went 1-for-4 on the day, with both players combining to drive in three runs, to aid the Lady Panthers in the victory. Elisa Collins and Chloi Hayslip each scored a run to round out the Clay efforts.

The Lady Panthers hosted Symmes Valley on Tuesday and will play at Northwest on Wednesday.


Clay 12, Symmes Valley 2 (F/5)

Like the Minford softball unit before it, the Clay Panthers’ baseball program also rolled to a resounding victory on Senior Night as Clay collected a 12-2 victory over the Symmes Valley Vikings on Monday evening in Rosemount.

And once again, the seniors played a key role in another big victory for the Panthers.

The senior class of Cole Gilliland, Drew Hadsell, Grant Hempill, and Brody Riffe showed patience and poise at the plate by combining to draw three walks and driving in three RBI while also scoring eight runs at the plate. Hempill led the way by going 1-for-2 with a walk, two RBI, and three runs scored on the day. Hadsell notched a hit and scored a run, while Gilliland and Riffe added two runs on their own as the quartet helped to cap off their regular season careers at home in grand fashion.

“I’m really proud of the boys tonight,” Clay head coach Marc Cottle said. “It was a good win against a well-coached Symmes Valley unit. I am so proud of our four seniors — Brody, Cole, Drew, and Grant — for how they have represented the program and how they have led this team. This was their last regular season game at home and they will be missed dearly next year.”

Dakota Dodds proved to be the main catalyst for Clay in its mercy-rule victory over Symmes Valley as the freshman threw five innings of five-hit baseball while striking out seven and only walking a pair. Dodds allowed two runs in the second inning but was otherwise untouched in a quality outing for the promising youngster, and was vital at the plate as the seven-hole hitter went 2-for-3 with four RBI to help his own cause.

“I can’t say enough about Dakota,” Cottle said. “Even though he didn’t have his best stuff, he pounded the strike zone and gave us five quality innings. He’s also starting to swing the bat really well, and went 2-for-3 with four RBI.”

In addition to the above quintet, McGwire Garrison went 1-for-2 with a walk, two RBI, and a run scored, Keith Cottle went 1-for-2 with a walk, a RBI, and two runs scored, and Reece Whitley went 1-for-3 with a RBI to aid Clay in its efforts. Bradley McCleese closed out the Panthers’ efforts by walking and scoring a run.

Clay played at Symmes Valley Tuesday evening and will play at Rock Hill on Friday in what will be its final contest of the regular season.


Portsmouth 5, Unioto 0

The Portsmouth Trojans continued their roll over the latter half of the 2017 season as Portsmouth claimed another big victory over Unioto with a 5-0 victory on Monday evening.

All eight individuals on the Portsmouth side — Allison Douthat, Ethan Haas, Luke Rodbell, and the doubles pairings of Luke Purdy and Logan Carter as well as Jacob Fraley and Dillan Shugert, all won their respective matches on Monday evening as Portsmouth claimed 60 of the 64 matches available on the evening.

Douthat, who played at the No. 1 singles slot, and Rodbell, who performed in the No. 3 singles slot, were especially impressive, as the pair defeated Caitlyn McKell and Conor McMahan, respectively, without losing a set.

No. 1 singles — Allison Douthat (Portsmouth) def. Caitlyn McKell (Unioto) 6-0, 6-0

No. 2 singles — Ethan Haas (Portsmouth) def. Colton Morton (Unioto) 6-1, 6-0

No. 3 singles — Luke Rodbell (Portsmouth) def. Conor McMahan (Unioto) 6-0, 6-0

No. 1 doubles — Luke Purdy/Logan Carter (Portsmouth) def. Brett Moore and Brayden Warren (Unioto) 6-0, 6-1

No. 2 doubles — Jacob Fraley/Dillan Shugert (Portsmouth) def. XIXI McKell and Karly Payton (Unioto) 6-1, 6-1

By Kevin Colley

Reach Kevin Colley at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1930 OR on Twitter @ColleyKevin7

Reach Kevin Colley at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1930 OR on Twitter @ColleyKevin7