East County Sports

Eagles jump to win; Cougs overpowering

Steele Canyon’s Jazmin Williams connects on a home run on Wednesday. / Vic Marano


By Adam Paul

With one week to go in the regular season, both league races aren’t over yet with big games on Friday, and also playoff positioning still to be decided will make things a little more interesting as well as the conclusion comes next Friday.

Granite Hills 9, Valhalla 2

EL CAJON – An early lead by the Granite Hills Eagles (6-16-1, 2-5 GHL) led to a big 9-2 victory over the visiting Valhalla Norsemen (10-11, 3-5 GHL) on Wednesday (May 26) afternoon in Grossmont Hills League play.

The Eagles would take advantage of opportunities in the bottom of the second inning when a ball hit by Kayla Fox (RUN) was misplayed allowing both Alexis Bauers (RUN) and Kiki Sandoval (1-3, R) to score, a couple of batters later Chloe Knepp (2-4, R, 2 RBI) would drive in both Sofia Mujica (2-2, 2 R, RBI, HR) and Fox with a base hit to left field to make it 4-0.

Another error by the Norsemen in the bottom of the third inning would lead to Paige Baird (2-4, 2 R, 3 RBI, HR) scoring to give the Eagles a 5-0 lead.

Despite a base hit by Aubrielle McKee (1-4) and a fielders’ choice by Marissa Lupo to start off the top of the fourth inning the Eagles Knepp would get help with a double-play ball and retire the following batter to get out of the inning.

Granite Hills would extend their lead even more in the bottom of the inning when Baird belted a three-run blast over the left-field fence to make it 8-0. Scoring on the home run was Makenna Hines (1-2, R) and Knepp.

Valhalla would finally breakthrough in the top of the fifth inning as Naomi Villalva (2-3, R) singled to lead things off, Maryn Jordan (2-4, R, 2 2B) followed with a double to left field and Andrea Gonzalez (1-4) reached on an error to load the bases. With the bases loaded McKayla Fish (RBI) hit a fly ball out to right field that allowed Villalva to tag up and race home to make it 8-1, the following batter Cadyn Ruffer (2-4, RBI, 2B) would single to center to bring in Jordan which made it 8-2 and would advance Gonzalez to third.

The Norsemen looking to push across more runs decided to send Gonzalez home on a stolen base attempt but she would be caught stealing for the second out and McKee would line out to end the inning.

The Eagles leading 8-2 in the bottom of the fifth inning would add another run when Mujica blasted a solo shot over the right-field fence for her sixteenth of the season to make it 9-2. Her home run was the sixth game in a row with at least one and also the second such streak of the season for her doing so.

Valhalla would get a lone base hit by Cadyn Ruffer in the top of the seventh inning before Knepp would finish things out with a groundout to first base to end the game.

For the Norsemen, Fish took the loss as she allowed nine runs on nine hits over six innings while walking two and striking out ten.

Knepp for the Eagles picked up the complete-game victory as she allowed two runs on ten hits while walking one and striking out five on the day.

The win by the Eagles snapped a two-game losing streak while the Norsemen have lost four games in a row.


Helix 8, Grossmont 5 – In a tightly contested game, the Helix Highlanders (21-4, 8-0 GHL) were able to break through late and hold off the Grossmont Foothillers (7-14, 3-4 GHL) 8-5 on Wednesday (May 26) afternoon in Grossmont Hills League action.

Helix would strike first when Audrey Kull roped a triple to bring in Kori Jonilonis who led off with a single to start the game.

Despite trailing the Foothillers started their half of the first inning with a walk by Natalie Emery, a single by Kimmy Bond, and a walk by Katelynn Parent to load the bases. A couple of batters later Alyssa Bolden with one out hit a ball to right field that was misplayed which would bring home Emery to tie the game at 1-1, Bond would also score on the error to give Grossmont a 2-1 lead.

The Highlanders would tie the game in the top of the second inning thanks to a base hit by Kull that brought home Angel Riggins.

With both teams stifling each other in both the third and fourth innings the Highlanders would finally break the tie in the top of the fifth with a two-out rally.

Bella Bordine’s double with two outs brought in Kull followed by a couple of batters later when Sophia Ramuno helped her own cause with a base hit scoring Ashton Isbelle to give them a 4-2 lead.

“Today’s approach was nothing new,” Bordine said. “I stick with what makes me successful. I want the at-bats when there is pressure to score runs and I was given that today.”

Grossmont would answer with a run in the bottom of the inning when Jade Daley with two outs drove in Emery to make it 4-3.

Despite giving the run back the Highlanders would extend their lead in the top of the sixth inning when Jolene Giles knocked in Amber Young on a ground ball out to make it 5-3, the next batter Bordine followed with a base hit to bring in Kull which gave them a 6-3 lead.

“After my first at-bat I had to make an adjustment between each at-bat,” Bordine said. “The Grossmont pitcher changed her location and spin. I still need to be able to track it and hit it.”

Grossmont in the bottom of the inning would get back-to-back base hits by Sunny Miller and Alexis Fleischer but Ramuno settled down and retired the next three batters to end the threat.

Helix would score another pair of runs in the top of the seventh inning when Jio Nuanez drove in a run and Young’s fielders’ choice allowed Riggins to race home to give them an 8-3 lead.

Things were looking good for the Highlanders with a five-run lead in the bottom of the seventh inning but with two-outs, the Foothillers tried to mount a late rally.

With two-outs Miller would single to left field allowing Bond to come in and score, a couple of batters later Caitlyn Potts drove in Daley to pull within 8-5. However, this would be as close as they would get as Ramuno would strike out the next batter to end the game and preserve the victory.

Fleischer took the loss for the Foothillers as she gave up eight runs on thirteen hits over seven innings while walking three and striking out four.

On the other side, Ramuno went the distance in which she picked up the win allowing five runs on eight hits while walking five and striking out eleven on the day.

With the win, the Helix Highlanders reach or go over the twenty-win mark for the first time since the 2008 season when they finished 20-10 overall.

The Highlanders have tallied the most wins in a season by their program since 1995 by winning their ninth straight game, matching a season-high winning streak from earlier this season.

“It’s incredible that we are close to being tied for the most wins ever (in school history) and possibly close to breaking that mark,” Bordine said.


Steele Canyon 15, West Hills 3 – A big day at the plate for Steele Canyon’s Jazmin Williams (4-5, 2 R, 4 RBI, HR) who drove in four runs and had four hits in the convincing win over the West Hills Wolf Pack on Wednesday (May 24).

West Hills (4-9, 0-7 GHL) would strike first in the bottom of the first inning when Alyssa Thornton (2-3, RBI) drove in Sabrina Brown (2-3, 2 R, 3B) who tripled to lead 1-0.

But Steele Canyon (14-9, 6-1 GHL) didn’t waste any time as Breanna Lakin (3-4, 3 R) led off with a walk, Marley Rimoldi (3-4, 3 R, RBI) followed with a base hit, and a couple of batters later a ground ball out by Kamea Seunanne (2-3, R, 4 RBI, 2B) allowing Lakin to score tied the game at 1-1, Rimoldi who advanced to third would race home when Thornton threw a wild pitch to make it 2-1.

Steele Canyon’s Breanna Lakin scores against West Hills on Wednesday. / Vic Marano

The Wolf Pack would tie the game in the bottom of the inning when with one out Emily Byrd (1-2, R, 2B) doubled and a couple of batters later Amaya Angeli (2-3, RBI) singled in Byrd.

With the score knotted at 2-2 the Cougars untied it in the top of the third inning starting with a double by Tayler Thomas (2-3, RBI, 2B) that brought home Williams to make it 3-2, a few batters later Rimoldi would drive in Janea Wilson (1-4, R), Mariah Mata (R, RBI) followed with a walk that scored Iryana Oliver (1-5, 2 R), a single by Seunanne scored Lakin, another base hit by Allyson Haessly (2-3, R, 2 RBI) scored Rimoldi to make it 7-2, the next batter Williams would drive in Rimoldi to give the Cougars an 8-2 lead.

In the top of the fourth the Cougars added more runs when Seunanne roped a two-run double, Haessly drove in a run on a sacrifice fly and Williams singled in another run to make it 12-2.

Trailing in the bottom of the fifth inning the Pack would score their only other run of the game when Brown scored on a double-play ball hit by Naomi Kai (1-3) to make it 12-3.

Leading big in the top of the sixth inning the Cougars would add to their lead when Williams belted a two-run home run over the left-field fence which was followed by a solo homer by Isabella Smith (1-2, R, RBI, HR).

Thornton took the loss as she only lasted two and a thirds inning in which she gave up eight runs on nine hits while walking two and striking out two, Lily Youngdale came in relief and went three and two-thirds of an inning in which she allowed seven runs on ten hits while striking out one.

For the Cougars, Davina Smith got the win as she went all seven innings in which she allowed three runs on nine hits while walking one and striking out four.


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