East County Sports

Winning, walk-off magic for Santana, Steele Canyon



ECS staff report

SANTEE – Trailing 10-8, Santana High right fielder Sara Spry would come up big in the clutch, lining a bases-clearing triple for the walk-off 11-10 victory for the Sultans in the bottom of the seventh inning to beat Granite Hills on Friday (Apr.28) in Grossmont Hills League action.

Prior to the exciting conclusion, the Santana Sultans (15-3-1 overall, 3-1 GHL) looked like they were going to come away with a regular victory, as they jumped out to a 6-0 lead to start things off.

The scoring started when Emma Schneider hit a ball that was misplayed, allowing Spry to come in to score, making it 1-0. After a walk to Anabella Heguy to score Taylinn Warren, the following batter Emma Schneider was hit by a pitch, scoring Delaney Smith to give them a 3-0 lead.

Adding to the Eagle’s woes in the inning was Vanessa Ryan who doubled to left field, scoring both Heguy and Kylee Aziz to extend the lead to 6-0 for the Sultans.

But a large lead hasn’t always been a safe thing in the rivalry between Santana and Granite Hills (13-7, 2-3 GHL). Over the years, games have typically been decided late, as was the case in the latest chapter.

The bats of Granite Hills would finally come alive in the top of the fourth inning, thanks to Kamryn Flath leading off with a single, followed by Sofia Mujica drawing a walk. Now with a pair of runners on, Makayla Tileia would come up and smash an RBI double, scoring Flath to make it 6-1. The next batter, Makenna Hines, followed with a two-run double, and Peyton Wells would double in Hines to pull the Eagles to 6-4.

After the Sultans pushed across a run in the bottom of the inning, the Eagles struck again as Mujica blasted a solo shot deep over the center field fence for her 11th of the season to make it 7-5.

Another run by the Sultans in the bottom of the inning courtesy of a fielder’s choice by Miller, scoring Schneider, would make it 8-5.

The Eagles would answer again as Kiki Sandoval doubled in Hines, and Ariana Heninger grounded out. However, in the process, Sandoval would come in and score to make it 8-7.

Down to their last at-bat, the Eagles started off with a base hit by Flath off Bella Zuckerman, who had come in to relieve Gracie Johnston.

The next batter, Mujica, would be intentionally walked which advanced Flath to second base. Tileia came to bat and promptly singled to center field, allowing Flath to come around and tie the game at 8-8. After a hit by pitcher Wells would double in both Marilynn Lewis, who had come into run for Mujica, and Tileia to give Granite their first lead of the game 10-8.

Needing a comeback, the Sultans started off on the right foot as Miller led by walking. She would advance to second when Kaitlyn Ruckle, with one out, singled to center field.

A walk to Ryan set up the dramatics of Spry’s coming through in the clutch with her bases-clearing, game-winning triple.

Wells, the starting pitcher for the Eagles, would take the loss, as she allowed 11 runs on nine hits over six and one-third innings while striking out two on the day.

Johnston would start off things for the Sultans, but wouldn’t factor into the decision. She would allow seven runs on eight hits over six innings while striking out one. Zuckerman, who came into the game in relief would get the win, going one inning and allowing three runs on three hits.


Steele Canyon 3, Helix 2

JAMUL – Steele Canyon senior Jazmin Williams added another part to her resume on Friday (Apr.28), as she came up with the clutch game-winning RBI double to break a 2-2 tie and give the Cougars a walk-off victory over the Helix Highlanders in Grossmont Hills League action.

Pitching-wise both sides were pretty limiting, but Cougar’s starter Marina Gonzalez would come away with the win, as she went all seven innings allowing two runs on five hits while striking out four.

Lauren Farace, who got the starting nod for the Highlanders and wouldn’t factor in the decision, tossed four innings in which she allowed two runs on three hits and struck out four. Katelyn Woodland, who came in to relieve Farace, took the loss, allowing one run on four hits over two and two-thirds innings and striking out four.

Steele Canyon would score the first run of the game, thanks to Kayala Hopkins who doubled to left bringing in Isabella Azevedo. They would add their second run in the bottom of the fourth inning, thanks to the speedy Azevedo who successfully stole home to give the Cougars a 2-0 lead.

The two runs were looking good until Angel Riggins took the Gonzalez offering and crushed it deep to center-field for a two-run home run, scoring Elaine Mohammad to tie the game up.

Neither team would manage anything further until the Cougars, in their half of the seventh, saw Hailey Trujillo lead off with a single to left field. A couple of batters later, Emma Shellstrom, with one out, singled to right field, setting up the two-out heroics by Williams.


Valhalla 17, Monte Vista 0

SPRING VALLEY – Three Valhalla Norsemen pitchers combined for a five-inning no-hitter as they won Friday’s (Apr. 28) mercy-rule-shortened Grossmont Valley League contest against the Monte Vista Monarchs.

Devyn Mack was credited with the victory as she tossed two no-hit innings, fanning three. Liliana Alvarado came in and went two innings in which she struck out two, and Naomi Villalva finished things off by tossing an inning and striking out one.

Kylie Garrett took the loss for the Monte Vista Monarchs. She surrendered 17 runs on 15 hits over five innings.

Cadyn Ruffer had the big bat for Valhalla as she went 2-for-3 at the plate which included a home run in the fourth inning and driving in four runs.

The other Norsemen to have quite a day at the plate was Alvarado, who was a perfect 4-for-4, including three RBI and scoring a pair of runs.

Valhalla has now won three in a row and improves to 11-9-1 overall and 5-1 in the Grossmont Valley League.

With the loss, Monte Vista has dropped five in a row and falls to 4-9 overall and 1-5 in Grossmont Valley League play.


West Hills 17, Mount Miguel 0

SPRING VALLEY – A perfect 4-for-4 outing at the plate for West Hills junior Samiya Wright, including three doubles and four RBI was one highlight in the Wolf Pack’s five-inning shortened victory over the Mount Miguel Matadors, 17-0, Friday (Apr.28) in Grossmont Valley League play.

Another facet was the 21 hits the West Hills Wolf Pack tallied against Matadors pitching.

Wright’s teammate Kristina Deal would drive in five runs, as she went 2-for-5 including a triple and a double.

Jaci Mckindley would drive in three runs as she went 2-for-4, including a double.

Mount Miguel’s lone hit came in the third inning when Sami Jelowdar singled.

Wright wasn’t the only Wolf Pack batter to go perfect at the plate. Junior Faith Balesteri would drive in a pair of runs as she went 4-for-4 on the day and freshman Katy Spargo scored four runs in her 3-for-3 day at the plate.

Alyssa Thornton was credited with the victory for West Hills, as she went four innings, giving up one hit and striking out eight. Raelyn Gagnon came in and finished things off, going one inning and striking out three.

Sydney Henderson, the starter for Mount Miguel took the loss, as she allowed 17 runs on 21 hits over five innings.

West Hills, with the victory, has now won four games in a row, and improves to 13-6-1 overall and remains unbeaten in Grossmont Valley League play with a record of 5-0.

Mount Miguel drops to 4-10-1 overall and 1-4 in Grossmont Valley League play.


Christian 3, Madison 1 (8 inn.)

CLAIREMONT MESA – Christian High’s Hannah Mroz and Giselle Colmenero both provided the extra-innings heroics with two outs, as the Patriots won in eight innings over the Madison Warhawks, 3-1, in a big non-Western League contest.

Madison, which  came into the contest on a seven-game winning streak by outscoring its opponents, 125-25, would see their bats go cold against the Patriots.

Payton Grosset who drew the starting assignment for Christian really showed her stuff and why the future is bright as she limited the Warhawks to only three hits and one run over eight innings while striking out a career-high 14 in the win.

Sierra Minshew, who came into the contest in relief, would take the loss for Madison as she allowed two runs on six hits over three innings. Audrina Burnett, who started, went five innings allowing one run on three hits while striking out three.

Colmenero, who would help spark the victory in the extra innings, earlier in the fourth inning doubled to right field. However, the ball would be misplayed by the right fielder, allowing Mroz to come in to score giving the Patriots the 1-0 lead.

Madison would tie the game in their half of the fifth inning, thanks to Sinai Samuela who doubled to center field, scoring Stella Destino.

With neither team’s pitching giving an inch, the contest would go into extra innings, where Ashley Wood led off the top of the eighth by smashing a double to left field; she would eventually wind up on third base on consecutive flyouts. Now with two outs and the Patriots needing something, the next batter Mroz would provide that something as she singled to right field scoring Wood. Mroz would then steal second base to get into scoring position and would come around to score when Colmenero provided the second heroic act with a base hit to right field.

Grosset, after allowing a bunt single in which Destino would be caught advancing to second base, would retire the final two batters to end the game.

With the win, Christian improves to 9-7-1; Madison falls to 12-4.



Grossmont Hills League
Santana 11, Granite Hills 10 (walk-off)
Steele Canyon 3, Helix 2 (walk-off)
Grossmont Valley League
Valhalla 17, Monte Vista 0 (5 inn.)
West Hills 17, Mount Miguel 0 (5 inn.)
Grossmont 17, ECVHS 1 (5 inn.)
Eastern League
Christian 3, Madison 1 (8 inn.)
Liberty Charter 15, at Guajome Park 4
Manzanita League
Borrego Springs 19, at Vincent Memorial 10
Warner at Julian

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