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Lady Spartans take two from Clippers

Solon wins 8-4 and 8-5
Solon’s Taylor Ryan drives the ball in game one of a varsity doubleheader Wednesday, June 14, in Oxford against CCA. Ryan scored two runs, had one hit and one RBI in five at-bats. (photos by Chris Umscheid)

OXFORD– They welcomed an old friend back in Oxford.
Jim White and his Solon Lady Spartans traveled to McAreavy Field in Oxford Wednesday, June 14, for a varsity doubleheader with the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) Clippers.
Before the starting lineups were read, White was recognized for his 18 years at the helm of the Clipper softball program, which included six state titles, two state runner-ups and a pair of state tournament third-place finishes. He was also honored for his continuing contributions to Solon’s program as he shuffled his foot in the dirt outside the visiting dugout before waving to the crowd. Former players from both schools were in attendance for a brief mini-reunion after the games, which the Lady Spartans took 8-4 and 8-5.
Solon struck early and often, putting up one run in the top of the first inning in game one, but the Creek Girls answered with a two-run homer off the bat of Ainsley Schrock.
The Lady Spartans put up one run each in the second, third and fourth before the Clippers could score again with one run in the bottom of the fourth. Solon kept up their run-each-inning effort with one in the fifth, two in the sixth and one in the seventh. CCA’s final run came in the bottom of the sixth.
The Spartans’ 10 hits came from Jess Heick (two), Madison Rogers (two), Taylor Moore (two, including a double), Bryn Hanrahan, Taylor Ryan, Tara Lance, and Jadyn Jeter.
Riley Hennes (two), Abbi Kinnaird (two), Schrock (home run), and Lydia Banwart (double) produced CCA’s six hits.
McKenna Miller took the win for Solon, giving up six hits and four runs (three earned) while striking out six and walking one through six innings. Kayla West finished the game for Solon, striking out one.
Raina Henze took the loss for the Clippers giving up 10 hits and eight runs (six earned) while striking out one and walking four in seven innings.
Solon put four runs up in the top of the first inning and followed with two in the second and two in the third to start the nightcap with an 8-0 lead before the Creek Girls could muster a run in the bottom of the third.
CCA attempted to rally back with two runs in the bottom of the fourth and one each in the sixth and seventh but came up short in the 8-5 loss.
Hanrahan (four), Lance (two, including a double), Moore (two, including a double), Haley Kluesner (two), Ryan, Heick and Miller provided Solon with their 13 hits.
West went the distance for Solon, giving up 11 hits and five runs (one earned) while striking out three and walking two.
The Clippers’ 11 hits came from Hennes (three, including a double), Kinnaird (three), Karsyn Stratton (two, including a double), Fox, Schrock and Banwart.
Peyton Grafft took the loss for CCA, giving up 13 hits and eight earned runs through seven innings with no strikeouts and one walk.
Solon improved to 15-5 with the wins while the Creek Girls dipped to 7-15 overall.
The Lady Spartans are home Thursday, June 22, as Maquoketa visits for a doubleheader starting at 6 p.m. and will host a tournament Friday and Saturday, June 23 and 24, starting at noon both days ahead of a visit from Western Dubuque for a doubleheader on Monday, June 25, starting at 6 p.m.
The Clippers will host their tournament Friday and Saturday, June 23 and 24, at the U of I softball complex starting at 10 a.m. on Friday and 9 a.m. on Saturday. Center Point-Urbana visits Oxford on Monday, June 26, for a 6 p.m. doubleheader and Benton Community visits on Wednesday, June 28, for a 6 p.m. doubleheader.