ASHTON – The Amboy Clippers saw their baseball season come to an end after an 8-7 setback to Earlville-Leland in the Ashton-Franklin Center Class 1A Regional on May 16.
The Clippers had excellent chances to take the lead in the first three innings, but couldn’t get a clutch hit. Hunter Zimmerly finally broke a scoreless tie in the fourth frame with a two-run double and Mitchell McLaughlin followed with an RBI single for a 3-0 Amboy lead.
McLaughlin, who started on the mound, was relieved by Zimmerly in the fourth. The plan was for both pitchers to split the game and then both would be available for the regional championship game three days later. Zimmerly struggled and McLaughlin was brought back in with Amboy trailing 5-3.
The Clippers responded with three runs in the top of sixth to reclaim the lead, 6-5, with big hits coming off the bats of Justin Hart, Clayton Kemp and Lane Boehle.
But Earlville-Leland put three runs on the board in the bottom of the sixth to forge in front, 8-6.
Amboy tallied one run in the top of the seventh and had the bases loaded, but Earlville-Leland was able to get the final out to preserve the victory.
Zimmerly (single, double) and McLaughlin (two singles) two hits apiece for the Clippers, while Hart, Kemp and Boehle all doubled. Preston Henkel and Maverick Lindenmeyer each reached base twice.