East County Sports

ROUNDUP: Santana, Grossmont, Helix win league games


East County Sports staff report

RANCHO SAN DIEGO (4-4-2019) – For five innings, Santana High, co-leaders of the Grossmont Hills League, were out-hitting pesky Valhalla, yet couldn’t shake them off by only holding a 5-4 lead against the club still winless in league play.

Then the experience of the Sultans kicked into gear, pouring in six runs in both the 6th and 7th innings to finally take the nod over the Norsemen, 17-6, on Wednesday (Apr. 3).

Even late, it took Santana a while to get going, needing six batters just to register a run in the 6th.

But once Ashley Madrigal lined an RBI single to left field, the flood gates opened, as Madrigal was the first of six straight batters to either single or walk, each for an RBI. All told, the Sultans registered seven singles in the innings.

The 7th was no different.with five additional singles against a beleaguered Norsemen pitching staff, which allowed 10 runs for an eighth time this season.

Sultans leadoff hitter Madison Mendez batted 3-for-5 with a double, raising her season average to .467. The third baseman ranks second on the ballclub in both average (Lakaila Aquiningoc-David, .516) and RBI (Joey Barkhimer leads, 14-13).

Valhalla saw some charge by answering with four tuns in the 7th, but the game was already decided.

For the Norsemen (6-13 overall, 0-3 GHL), Samantha Green and Kelly Olson both recorded three RBI. Both are seniors.

Santana (7-4, 3-0 GHL) saw Holmquist bat 4-for-5. She also collected three RBI, as did Barkhimer and Nicole Penton-March.

TORREY PINES 9, GRANITE HILLS 3: At Carmel Heights, for the second time this season, the third-ranked Eagles got wiped out in a major tournament.

After being defeated by Carlsbad in the Cougar Classic quarterfinals, 6-1, Wednesday’s (Apr. 3) Falcon Fiesta loss to the tournament host Torrey Pines will not aid the resume when it comes to playoff seeding.

Torrey Pines shortstop Katie Walling, who is gaining favor to make the short list as the CIFSDS player of the year, demonstrated her talents.

The sophomore blasted a pair of home runs and drove in six runs in the first two innings, propelling the Falcons to a quick 6-2 advantage.

Walling smacked a 2-run homer to center field in the 1st, also scoring Kyra Chan, who walked, then went 4-for-4 at the plate, scoring four times.

An inning later, Walling went to left on a 3-run shot. She added a run-scoring single in the 4th, then stole second base.

Meanwhile, Falcons pitcher Haley White limited the Eagles to four hits. She struck out eight.

The lone RBI for Granite Hills (11-4) were by Sydney Huse (single) and Brooke Bertussi (ground out).

Torrey Pines (10-5), outside of Chan and Walling, only had two other hits, although one was a solo homer by White.

This season marks the start of the third decade of the Falcon Fiesta.

However, Torrey Pines has only reached the title game four times, capturing its lone crown in 2002.

GROSSMONT 5, WEST HILLS 1: At Grossmont, both clubs registered five hits, but all five by the host Foothillers directly resulted in runs to best West Hills in Grossmont Hills League action on Wednesday (Apr. 4).

Moments after Grossmont first baseman Jordan Brown started an inning-ending double play in the 2nd, the Hillers started to rise.

With two runners in scoring position by a hit-by-pitch and a single, Jessica Medlin  continued her hitting tear with a 2-run double to give the Hillers a 2-1 lead.

An inning later, Katilina Contreras reached on an error, then Samaria Roope launched her fifth home run of the season.

Then in the 4th, Medlin (2-for-3) led off with a double, Natalie Emery singled, then pinch hitter Rainee Foster intentionally slapped the ball toward first base for an RBI.

That was enough for Roope to gain the pitching win. She struck out eight Wolf Pack batters with the lone run coming unearned in the 1st.

Grossmont (11-5 overall, 2-1 GHL) has won 8-of-9.

West Hills 4-9, 0-3 GHL),which saw senior shortstop Alyssa Borbolla bat 2-for-3, has lost six straight since falling in extra innings at Hilltop.

In the JV game played at West Hills, the contest was suspended in the 4th inning with the Foothillers leading 4-1. It seems the bag at second base snapped from its mooring and could be remounted, allowing the base to spin when contacted, The contest will be continued next Thursday.

HELIX 10, MONTE VISTA 0:  At La Mesa, Highlanders pitchers Sophia Ramuno and Kasey Castro combined to fire a 2-hit shutout of the Monarchs in Grossmont Valley League action on Wednesday (Apr. 3).

Both pitchers allowed one hit each, as Ramuno went three innings for the win, while Castro gained the save in a run-rule shortened game. Both also hit doubles, as did Scotties teammate Zoe Kuhlken.

The Scotties continued their trend of striking in the first inning. The doubles by Castro and Kuhlken came consecutively for RBI in the 1st, when the Highlanders (9-7 overall, 2-0 GVL) scored four times.

Four players for Helix — Avery Perez, Erin Brown, Kori Jonilonis and Ramuno — recorded two hits each.

Jolene Giles (2-for-2, RBI, BB) helped Helix jump out ahead.

“I was just feeling it today,” Giles said. “I felt really confident today at the plate. Our team is planning on a very high level right now and we’re playing great as a team. That’s allowing us to really buy into everything the coaches are telling us. I feel we’re peaking at a great time of the season.”

On the defensive side, Sophia Ramuno (3 IP, 5 K, 1 H, 0 R) and Kasey Castro (2 IP, 5 K, 1 H, 0 R) combined to hold the Monarchs to 0 runs, 2 hits, and 10 strikeouts (out of 20 batters who came to the plate in total).

Other offensive contributors include Erin Brown (1-3, 2 R, RBI), Amber Young (1-1, 2B, RBI), and Nicole Hernandez (RBI, R, 2 BB)

The Highlanders will host the El Cajon Valley Braves on Friday.

The lone hits for Monte Vista (7-5, 2-2 GVL) were by Ionna Upham and Abby Johnston.

-Tyler Gribble contributed to this report

STEELE CANYON 11, UNIVERSITY CITY 1: At Rancho San Diego, the Cougars secured their most one-sided victory of the season in refunding the Cents in non-league action. A 4-run rally in the 6th ended this game early via the run rule.

On the same day that boyfriend Billy Tellous slugged his San Diego County leading fifth home run of the season for the Steele Canyon baseball team, the Cougars’ Audrey Bagge also homered to take over the East County lead with six round-trippers.

Bagge also equaled a season-high with four RBI on 2-for-5 hitting, pushing her slugging percentage over the .800 plateau.

Her homer came in the 2nd, following a one-out single by J.J. Venzor (2-for-4, two runs) , as the Cougars scored three times in the 1st and 2nd to run-away early.

Bianca Morales also drove in four runs, including an RBI double to plate Venzor in the 1st. Morales, the third baseman, also posted a sacrifice fly in the 5th, then a walk-off, RBI double in the 6th in invoke the run rule.

Steele Canyon (7-8) saw the first four players on the lineup card — Venzor, Bagge, Morales and Amanda Whipple — collect two hits each.

University City (6-6) was coming off a 5-0 shutout win over Mission Bay. Before that, they lost to El Capitan, 6-0.

MISSION BAY 4, EL CAPITAN 0: At Pacific Beach, Buccaneers pitcher Keira Bucher tossed a 2-hit shutout to cool off the Vaqueros in Wednesday’s (Apr. 3) non-league game. Bucher, a freshman, struck out five and walked just one, snapping El Cap’s 8-game winning streak.

Leadoff batter Cat Griffiths batted 1-for-2 with a walk, scoring both times to spell the difference for Mission Bay (6-4-1), which had not posted a winning record all century until the current coach, Vinnie Ichihara, posted back-to-back winning seasons over the past two years.

The lone hits for the Vaqueros (11-5) were singles by Hannah Davis and Alexa Williams.

MOUNT MIGUEL 29, EL CAJON VALLEY 0: At ECVHS, the visiting Matadors (3-5 overall, 1-2 league) won their first GVL league game of the season in a victory over the winless Braves (0-7, 0-3).

MAR VISTA 15, CHRISTIAN 2: At Dawson Field, the visiting Mariners scored in every inning but on to take a 6-inning, non-league victory over the Patriots.

Mar Vista (9-3) received home runs from Abigail Rivera and Emily Leslie.

Rivera batted 3-for-4, with six RBI and scored a pair of runs.

For Christian (2-8), the team collected hits from Rachel Stephens, Mallory Steele and Audrey Shebloski.

“Today was a rough one for us but on the bright side we didn’t have as many errors as usual,” said Shebloski, a junior. “Even though our team was losing, the home run felt good as I’m trying to at least accomplish a few personal goals in a rebuilding year like this. The pitch was outside and I drove it to left center.

“I think going into league, we need to just push through the growing pains and continue to improve for upcoming years.”

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