Sometimes a clutch hit wins a game in dramatic fashion. On Tuesday night a clutch hit ended a mercy killing.

Clinton (15-6), tuning up for a Class 3A playoff game at Powdersville at noon on Saturday, pulverized Blacksburg, 12-1, in 5 innings. Four pitchers took turns on the mound, everyone played, and not even the Wildcats could have been too disappointed at busing home early after catcher Trenton Gambrell drove in the 11th and 12th runs with a 2-out base hit.

In the fifth inning, Will Johnson reached on an error, and Isaac Westmoreland was hit by a pitch, but the fourth Clinton hurler, Gambrell, steadied to strike out Todd White and retire Levi Barrett and Titus Tobb via flyouts to center field.

Gambrell succeeded Marcus Smith (1-2/3 innings), Trent Roth (2/3) and Damian Price (1-2/3) on the hill and made the top of the fifth the game’s end.

Lucas Earls took the loss. Blacksburg failed to get a hit in the last 3 innings.

Blacksburg (4-14) scored its run in the top of the first on Johnson’s single, but Clinton responded quickly with 3 in the bottom half, 7 more in the third (highlighted by Davis Wilson’s triple) and the aforementioned 2 in the fourth.

Jack Carroll and Wilson each scored 2 runs. Wilson was 3-for-3. Gambrell was 2-for-3 and drove in 2. Though 0-for-2 at the plate, Luke White drove in 2 runs.

Johnson was 2-for-2 for Blacksburg and drove in the Wildcats’ lone run.