East County Sports

Highlanders’ freshman Hernandez puts hurt on hosts

Helix at the plate against Olympian on Thursday afternoon.

2018 EAST COUNTY PREP SOFTBALL

By Adam Paul

EastCountySports.com

NON-LEAGUE

HELIX 12, OLYMPIAN 3

The Highlanders traveled down to the South Bay to take on the Eagles who gave Steele Canyon a run for their money the previous day. However, the Highlanders were not kind to their hosts as they led 7-0 after 5 1/2 innings.

In the top of the first, Avery Perez (4-5, 3R, RBI) for the Highlanders would start things off with a single and would advance to second on a sacrifice, McKenzie Flores (2-4, R, 2 RBI) would lace a single that moved Perez to third. The Highlanders would take a 1-0 lead when Perez would race home on a wild pitch by the Eagles. They preceded to extend their lead on a smash double by Laurali Patane (3-5, 3R, 3 RBI, 2B, HR) which scored Flores making it 2-0.

Helix would have a big inning in the top of the third when they pushed three runs on the board to make it 5-0 thanks to multiple opportunities. Starting with a fielder’s choice reach by Patane, Kasey Castro walked and both would come in to score on a three-run jack by Nicole Hernandez (4-5, 2R, 6 RBI, 2B, 2 HR) deep over the center field fence for her first career varsity homer. They would go on to add 2 more runs in the top of the fourth to extend their lead 7-0.

The Highlanders received some good pitching from sophomore Zoe Kuhlken (3-5) who in the first three innings retired the Eagles in order each time. She wouldn’t surrender a hit to the Eagles until the bottom of the fourth inning and would actually keep them scoreless until the bottom of the fifth when they managed to push across a couple runs to make it 7-2.

However, the Highlanders were not content with their five-run lead when in the top of the sixth they would add a couple more runs thanks to solo blasts from Patane and Hernandez which was her second on the day.

Pitching-wise, Kuhlken only gave up one more run the rest of the contest and would go 7 innings, giving up 3 runs of which 1 was earned on 6 hits while walking 2 and striking out 3 to garner the victory.

Also on the day, the Highlanders would rack up 21 total hits against the Eagles.

 

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