Clingan homers as Hawks split with Mavs

  • By Jesse Geleynse Herald reporter
  • Wednesday, April 23, 2008 6:20pm


Mountlake Terrace’s Paul Clingan had to wait quite a while for his well-deserved sigh of relief at the conclusion of this one.

The junior catcher had done it all at the plate for the Hawks—hitting a go-ahead two-run double in the fifth and a go-ahead two-run homer in the top of the seventh—in a April 22 Wesco South contest at Meadowdale.

But it was behind the plate in the bottom of the seventh where he watched in painstakingly close proximity as Hawks’ ace Jake Theis walked two straight Meadowdale hitters to force in one run and put the tying run on third and winning run on second.

“It was terrifying—I was thinking, ‘no one remembers the losing home run,’ ” he said. “I just wanted to get the win.”

Theis finally recorded that all-important 21st out on a line drive to right field, preserving the 4-3 win for Terrace and letting his catcher breathe easier.

More importantly for Terrace, Theis’ fifth victory of the season allowed the Hawks to climb back into a three-way tie for first place with Meadowdale — who beat Terrace 6-3 on Monday — and Jackson, who won Tuesday at Kamiak.

“It’s a huge momentum swing,” Clingan added. “It’s going to get our team on the right foot going into the next four games, which are huge.”

Tuesday’s game was scoreless through the first four innings as Meadowdale starter Jake Haight finessed his way through the pitcher’s duel with the hard-throwing Theis.

Terrace finally got on the board in the top of the fifth. Jaykob Sells singled with one out, and Matt Shafer singled one out later to bring up Clingan, who lined the ball to left. Meadowdale’s left fielder fell down, allowing both Sells and Shafer to score.

Meadowdale answered in the bottom of the inning with an RBI groundout by Roger O’Neill, then tied it in the bottom of the sixth when Andrew Suh’s two-out double scored Andy Lyon.

Terrace reclaimed the lead in the top of the seventh. Shafer’s one-out single brought up Clingan, who deposited Haight’s offering into the parking lot beyond the left-center field fence for his second home run of the season.

“He’s really been a clutch player for us the whole season, both offensively and defensively,” said Terrace coach Andrew Watters. “It’s nice to see him do it again.”

Meadowdale answered with one in the bottom of the seventh before leaving the bases loaded after Theis induced the lineout.

“(Meadowdale) just made that game tough,” Watters said. “It wasn’t a letdown on Jake’s part, they’re just a really goood team.”

Despite the loss, Meadowdale coach Bill Hummel was pleased with the way his team battled in a contest that he said felt like a playoff game.

“This game had a playoff feel to it,” he said. “It’s the type of effort and intensity we’ve been looking for and had been missing, and it’s the kind of intensity we’re going to need when we go up to Mount Vernon for the playoffs.”

Lyon finished with two singles to lead Meadowdale.

Shafer was 2-for-3 with two runs scored and Clingan finished 2-for-4 with all four Terrace RBI. Jaykob Sells was 2-for-3 with a run scored and twin brother Ryan was 3-for-4 for the Hawks.

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