ROXANA — Carly Campbell is something of a RBI engine for the East Alton-Wood River High softball team.
And Ms. Clutch was at it again Monday.
The junior catcher supplied a couple of key hits as EA-WR swept by rival Roxana, 10-8, in 8 innings and 5-4, in 5 innings. The shortened second game was called because of darkness, but that didn’t matter to the Oilers.
They improved to 12-14, while the Shells dropped to 9-18 and extended their skid to nine games.
“Roxana played hard, but we battled back in both games and found ways to win,” EA-WR coach Dana Emerick said.
He can point to Campbell as a big reason for the sweep. Her two-run single in the eighth inning of the opener snapped an 8-8 tie. Then she smacked a one-out triple in the fifth inning of the second game to knot things.
Teammate Emme Flanigan followed that hit with a run-scoring single and the Oilers enjoyed two wins in one day. They were the home team in Game 2.
“It means everything to win both games because it’s a rivalry when we play Roxana,” Campbell said. “We never gave up and it was a good doubleheader win.”
Teammate Courtney Beneke clouted a three-run home run in Game 2 and the Oilers struck for a dozen hits in the opener. Haley Shewmake provided three of them, while Ashley Knight and Flanigan joined Campbell as two-hit performers. It was Flanigan’s two-run single that capped a five-run fifth.
Campbell then came through with another timely hit in the eighth and Emerick marveled at her clutch performance. She was 4-for-7 in the doubleheader.
“It seems like Carly is at her best when there are runners on base and we are in need of a hit in a key situation,” he said. “She just set the school record for single-season RBIs (Campbell now has 30) and she is closing in on the career school record.”
Campbell added, “The more pressure, the better. It makes me concentrate a little bit more.”
When the Oilers and Shells battle, there’s always plenty on the line. EA-WR is 12-10 against Roxana over the last 11 seasons. Monday’s game was a twinbill since an earlier game at EA-WR was postponed because of rain.
“It used to be more of a heated rivalry, but it’s a more friendly one now,” Emerick said.
Roxana coach Mike Arbuthnot likes the way the Shells gave it their all, particularly with top player Hannah Rexford sidelined. She suffered a fractured tailbone last month and is sidelined indefinitely.
“I don’t think there is any chance she will be back before the end of the season,” Arbuthnot said. “That’s tough because she’s our No. 1 pitcher and hitter.”
Shelbie Jackson and Abi Stahlhut tried to boost the Shells. Jackson went 4-for-5 with a pair of doubles and three RBIs in the first game. Stahlhut was 3-for-5 and reached base 5 times in the opener. Teammate Sam Sherer chipped in with two hits.
“Both teams competed,” Arbuthnot said. “What really hurt us in the first game is that we left 15 runners on base. We had every opportunity to win it, but we couldn’t get the big hit.”
The Shells left the bases loaded twice and two runners on base in three more innings. They led 4-0 and 7-3, yet couldn’t hold those leads. Roxana trailed most of the second game, but went ahead 4-3 in the top of the fifth only to see EA-WR score twice in the bottom of the inning.
Morgan Moxey (first game) and Rebecca Null (second game) logged the wins. Phoebe Booher (first game) and Olivia Stangler (second game) absorbed the losses. Null pitched around five errors and allowed only one earned run.
Alexis Counts spurred Roxana in the second game after she hit a game-tying sacrifice fly in the seventh inning of the opener. Her two-run, two-out triple in the top of fifth tied things in the nightcap and she subsequently scampered home on a throwing error to give the Shells a 4-3 advantage. Counts had three RBIs in Game 2.
Then Campbell and Flanigan responded with the tying and winning hits, respectively, in the bottom of the fifth, giving the Oilers their second season sweep over the Shells in three seasons. They also won twice in 2014. The Shells and Oilers divided a pair of games in 2015.
EA-WR 10, ROXANA 8, (8 innings)
EA-WR 001 205 02 — 10 12 3
Roxana 130 210 10 — 8 11 1
EA-WR (11-14) — Haley Shewmake 3-4, Peyton Young 0-5 RBI, Morgan Moxey 0-4 RBI, Carly Campbell 2-4 RBI-2, Emme Flanigan 2-5 RBI-2, Rebecca Null 1-4, Courtney Beneke 1-3 2B RBI, Heather Martin 1-3 RBI, Ashley Knight 2-3 RBI. WP – Moxey IP-8 H-11 R-8 ER-5 BB-7 K-7
Roxana (9-17) — Abi Stahlhut 3-5 3B RBI, Shelbie Jackson 4-5 2B-2 RBI-3, Abby Palen 0-4 RBI, Alexis Counts 0-2 RBI, Ashley Betts 1-5 RBI, Sam Sherer 2-4, Lindsey Scroggins 1-4. LP – Phoebe Booher IP-8 H-12 R-10 ER-10 BB-5 K-5
EA-WR 5, ROXANA 4, (5 innings, called because of darkness)
Roxana 100 03 — 4 4 1
EA-WR 030 02 — 5 6 5
Roxana (9-18) — Alexis Stumpf 1-2, Palen 1-3, Counts 1-3 3B RBI-3, Olivia Stangler 1-3. LP – Stangler IP-4.1 H-7 R-5 ER-4 BB-2 K-1
EA-WR (12-14) — Moxey 1-2, Campbell 2-3 3B RBI, Flanigan 1-2 RBI, Beneke 1-1 HR RBI-3, Teresa Hand 1-1. WP – Null IP-5 H-4 R-4 ER-1 BB-1 K-4