East County Sports

MUSTANG LOPER DOMINATES IN CIF FINAL

Otay Ranch Mustangs CIF Division II Champions

2021 EAST COUNTY PREP SOFTBALL

CIF DIVISION II CHAMPIONSHIP

#2 Otay Ranch 4, #1 Helix 0

By Adam Paul

 

 

LA MESA In one of the more extraordinary performances in recent memory in a CIF Championship game Otay Ranch’s Maya Loper threw a performance for the ages despite walking five as she only allowed one hit on the day while striking out 14 over seven innings as the second-seeded Mustangs completely shut down the top-seeded Helix Highlanders, 4-0, on Saturday (June 19).

Helix (26-6) who had to play a playback game earlier in the day and came away with the victory looked to carry that momentum into the championship game but unfortunately just couldn’t get the bats rolling.

Otay Ranch (18-7) was able to score first with two outs in the top of the first inning when Sarah Loper singled to left field allowing Jaeden Inguito who had stolen second base to come into score giving them a 1-0 lead.

The Highlanders however looked to answer and started off on the right foot as playback game hero Kori Jonilonis led off with a lined double to left field, she would advance to third base on a ground ball out by Angel Riggins, the next batter Bella Bordine would draw a walk but unfortunately, both the courtesy runner and Jonilonis would be stranded as Loper would strike out the next batter and retire the next batter after on a fly ball out to end the threat and inning.

Moving to the top of the third inning and the Mustangs would strike again off of Highlanders pitcher Sophia Ramuno with two outs as Isabel would drive in Inguito to make it 2-0.

Not only was Maya Loper dominant in the circle but she would also help her own cause as she would lead off the top of the sixth inning with a smash solo home run to give the Mustangs a 3-0 lead.

Otay Ranch would tack on another run courtesy of a base hit by Vinluan in the top of the seventh inning that would bring home Sarah Loper after she would get into scoring position courtesy of an error by the Highlanders.

After allowing a lead-walk to start the bottom of the seventh inning Maya Loper would retire the next three batters in order which included a pair of strikeouts including one to end the game and bring on the frenzied cheers from the Mustang faithful.

Ramuno who got the starting nod for the Highlanders would allow three runs on ten hits while walking two and striking out six over six and two-thirds innings in the loss.

The win by Otay Ranch was their first-ever CIF Championship and was their first-ever appearance in a championship game.

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