ROUNDUP: Wolf Pack, Knights, Norsemen win

2019 EAST COUNTY PREP SOFTBALL

East County Sports staff report

SANTEE (3-15-2019) – West Hills High pitcher Kimie Brouard wasn’t expecting to step into the circle Thursday (Mar. 14), but she was called upon in the 6th inning when the visiting Raiders scored three times to move to within 6-5.

However, Brouard’s spark would ultimately transfer to the Wolf Pack offense, which answered with seven runs in the half-half of the inning to claim a run-rule triumph, 13-5, in the opening round of the Hilltop Tournament.

Brouard stranded the potential and go-ahead runners on base with a strikeout and a fielder’s choice grounder to quickly end Southwest’s threat.

Then she didn’t need to pitch the 7th — yet still earned the save — after the Wolf parlayed three hits, three walks, a hit batter and a pair of Raiders errors to bat around to cap the triumph early.

The big blow was a 2-run single by third baseman Sabrina Brown, who finished with three RBI on 2-for-4 hitting and two runs scored.
Star Gaylord followed with an RBI double to bring Brown home.

Shannon Kim, who started the inning on an error on her bunt, then singled with the bases loaded to invoke the run rule. 

Kim, the right fielder, finished 2-for-5 with 2RBI and 2 runs scored.

West Hills (3-2) also received hits each from Lily Youngdale and Mia Colabella.

Southwest’s top player, Cassandra Loa, batted 3-for-3 with three runs scored, but the Raiders (5-2) had their 4-game win streak snapped.

FOOTHILLS CHRISTIAN 25, ESCONDIDO ADVENTIST 0: At Escondido, the Knights hammered the Hawks in handing the hosts a horrific, haunting… ahhhh, you get the idea.

Knights cleanup batter Carly Robbins established a school record by driving in 8 runs. She did not get an opportunity to challenge the CIF San Diego Section record after the game was called after five innings.

The section and East County record — one of the oldest listed in the CIFSDS Record Book — was set by Christian High’s Jenny Ray. She knocked in 12 runs against Hoover on May 16, 2000. Ray broke the 1982 mark by a player from Holtvville against a small school which now plays in the Arizona state high school sports association, Winterhaven High (located across the Colorado River from Yuma, Ariz.).

The next best mark among Metro East County schools is 8 in 2007 by Steele Canyon’s Lorena Klopp, who later became a four-year starter at San Diego State.

Robbins smacked a pair of triples to drive in five runs in her 3-for-5 performance. She also posted an RBI ground out in the 1st, a run-scoring single in the 2nd, and grounded into a fielder’s choice for an RBI in the 5th.

In addition, Foothills Christian leadoff batter Carissa Wolford went 5-for-5, smacking a leadoff homer to open the 4th, scoring all five times. Kaylee Guler and Sheyenne Boubion also scored four times each.

Meanwhile, Wolford, the Knights starting pitcher,  tossed three no-hit innings, striking out 6 Hawks. Kaylee Guler went the final two innings, allowing one hit, yet registered all six of her outs on strikes.

VALHALLA 15, MISSION HILLS 6: At San Marcos, the Norsemen (4-4) may only be a .500 ballclub at present, but when they win, they really, really score runs.

For the fourth time this season, Valhalla reached double figures in a victory after pounding the host Grizzlies. Orange Nation is now averaging 12.3 runs/game when coming out on top.

Jade Hill fueled the Valhalla offense with three of the team’s 15 hits, including a double. The leadoff batter drove in four runs for the second time this season, while scoring twice.

Following a quiet 1st inning, both sides erupted for five runs in the 2nd.

However, the Norsemen then added four markers in the 3rd and were never again threatened. 

Much of the offense was generated by the bottom third of the batting order where Devyn Ruffer and Marissa Lupo collected two RBI each.

In addition, Maryn Jordan posted a season-best three hits for her fourth multi-hit outing of the season. Jordan is now batting .385, second on the Norsemen behind Hill’s .423 mark.

CALEXICO 4, STEELE CANYON 3 (9 .): Once upon a time, this result would’ve been considered an immense upset. Not any more.

The new millennium Bulldogs overcame a 3-run deficit to get even in the 6th, then pushed across the go-ahead run in the 9th to clunk the Cougars in both ballclub’s Hilltop Tournament opener Thursday (Mar. 14), held in Rancho San Diego.

Back in 2009, the Bulldogs won six ballgames, equaling their total from the four previous seasons combined. Two years later, Calexico had another winless campaign — frankly, this team had never been good.

However, things changed in 2013, when the Bulldogs not only registered 20 victories for the first time, they also swept a home-and-home series from local rival El Centro-Southwest, capturing their first-ever league title. Since then, the Dawgs have posted a composite record of 101-60-1 (2013-18).

Now taking a step up by participating in the Hilltop Tournament, the Bulldogs are continuing their winning ways as one of the largest enrollment schools in the CIF San Diego (more than 3,000 students).

Steele Canyon built an early leading after the Cougars scored of all their runs on a two-out rally in the 2nd inning.

a walk to Tayler Thomas, Lexi Hutchinson belted RBI triple to right field to scoring.

D.J. Dumeng followed with a run-scoring double, then she later sprinted home on a wild pitch.

However, Calexico pitchers Melanie Navarrete and Lynette Niebla combined to allow just two additional hits. Niebla closed with five shutout innings to gain the win. Both are juniors.

In the international tiebreaker, Daniella Hernandez was placed base. She came around on a sacrifice bunt by senior Estefania Caballero, then a sacrifice to center filed by freshman Valdez.

Steele Canyon’s ITB runner was Danielle Directo, who moved to third when Dumeng intentionally grounded to the right side. However, Calexico third baseman Brianna Amparano handled the next two balls hit in her direction, able to freeze the Directo, then throw out both batters at first base.

For Steele Canyon (3-4), Kim Jaggard also doubled, while Audrey Bagge went 1-for-3 with two walks, raising her season slugging percentage to an even 1.000.

BONITA VISTA 12, CHRISTIAN 6: At Dawson Field in El Cajon, the Patriots shocked the powerful Barona by scoring six times early, posting three runs in both the 1st and 2nd innings. Although the Barons rallied back to claim Thursday’s (Mar. 14) non-league contest, the improvement to the Christian offense has been notable this season.

The Christian batting card centers around cleanup hitter Devyn Krystek, who drove in three runs on 3-for-4 hitting, including a double.

“I’m very excited about where the team is heading,” Krystek said. “Personally, I feel very comfortable and relaxed at the plate. Our bats have really come alive the last few games and I’m excited for the rest of the season. We will continue to go out there and work hard. Our goal is to be performing our best once league play starts and make a run in  CIF.”

Meanwhile, Audrey Shebloski also went 3-for-4, scoring twice on Krystek hits.

“Our teams had a few miscues that would have kept the game a little closer,” Shebloski said. “I think our team did well against a very good team. We hit better as a team and even though we lost, it was still a well played game.

“I’ve felt the pitching will improve as we play more games.”

However, the Pats still need to work on defense, as errors made more than half of the Barons runs coming unearned.

Bonita Vista (6-1) received home runs from third baseman Gora. and first baseman Ashley Decker (3-for-4, double, 2 RBI, 4 runs). Gora’s leadoff homer in the 4rd tied the contest at 6-all, then Decker blackened the softball by going deep in the 4th.

For Christian (2-4), leadoff batter Harmony Blizard went 2-for-3 and scored twice. Catcher Kate Manes threw out two runners at third for the Pats.

“Pitching is getting better but we to continue working,” Christian High head coach George Gentry said. “Defensively, we’re not good enough to give anyone extra outs and bases. So we will continue to work.

“I am really happy with the effort and we will continue to work and improve every day. That was a good team no matter how good we played.”

SANTA FE CHRISTIAN 21, LIBERTY CHARTER 10: Much like the Christian Patriots, the Liberty Charter Lions possess some pop with the bats.

At Lemon Grove, the visiting Eagles scored in every inning to take Thursday’s (Mar. 14) non-league contest. They built a 12-0 cushion before the Lions answered with five runs in both the 3rd and 4th innings.

For Liberty Charter (2-2), Lily Schallock batted 3-for-4 with two RBI and a pair of runs scored to pace the offense. In addition, Jayden Ortiz went 2-for-3 with two RBI and scored twice, while Sarah Johnston belted a double.

Fast fact: Santa Fe Christian wasn’t always nicknamed the Eagles. The school’s original nickname was the Navigators.

LINCOLN 19, EL CAJON VALLEY 1: At Lincoln Acres section of San Diego, the visiting Braves (0-3)  found out it may be a long season. Following Wednesday’s  setback at Crawford, they again fell on Thursday in a one-sided decision to the Hornets.

In three starts, ECVHS has allowed 72 runs — which, by coincidence, is the California state record for runs allowed in a single game, when officials at La Jolla Country Day fired its coach following a 72-0 demolition of Victory Christian (not today’s school, but another one by the same name, also located in the South Bay in the early 1980s).

Fast fact: Lincoln wasn’t always nicknamed the Hornets. The school’s original nickname was the Presidents.

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