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West Ranch softball wins big

Posted: April 3, 2014 10:57 p.m.
Updated: April 3, 2014 10:57 p.m.
West Ranch’s Jessica Harper (9) hits a double in the third inning at West Ranch High School. West Ranch’s Jessica Harper (9) hits a double in the third inning at West Ranch High School.
West Ranch’s Jessica Harper (9) hits a double in the third inning at West Ranch High School.

West Ranch softball head coach Bob Shults admitted he was a little nervous heading into the Wildcats’ Foothill League opener with the Hart Indians on Thursday afternoon.

His team quickly showed Shults there was nothing to worry about.

The Wildcats jumped on Hart early, scoring four in the first inning of an eventual 13-1, five-inning game at West Ranch High to put an emphatic stamp on the start of West Ranch’s Foothill League title defense.

West Ranch is seeking its third straight league title this year, and improved to 12-3 overall and 1-0 in the Foothill League with the victory.

“I was very happy with what I saw today,” Shults said. “The girls were very patient at the plate. I was happy that they maintained their intensity throughout the game.”

Julia Lombardi, who was 3-for-3 on the day with two RBIs and two runs scored, put the Wildcats up early in the first with a two-RBI double to score Lauren Lindvall and Keeley Walsh for a 2-0 lead.

The Wildcats scored two more in the inning off freshman Hart pitcher Kylie Norwood.

The Indians (4-9, 0-1) had a chance in the second inning when Sierra Boyaijian and Sienna Vannoy reached base with one out.

But Wildcats pitcher Lexi Sorensen induced a ground out from Sydney Troxell and struck out Katy Nelson to end the threat.

It was one of six strikeouts for Sorensen, who pitched five innings, allowing two walks and one unearned run when Troxell crossed the plate in the final frame.

“Early on we had second and third when it was 4-0,” said Hart head coach Steve Calendo. “If we got a hit there it’s a different game. But we didn’t and they rolled.”

Boyaijian took over for Norwood in the third, but West Ranch continued to push runs across, scoring four in the third and five in the fourth.

Both Boyaijian and Norwood are natural infielders, but have moved into the circle to help fill a void for the Indians.

“They were strong. It wasn’t bad,” said Lombardi of Hart’s pitching. “They were hitting their spots and they kept us on our toes.”

Jenny Metcalf was 2-for-3 with two RBIs and Lindvall was 2-for-2 with an RBI for West Ranch.

Both teams will take a break from Foothill League play until after Spring Break, when Hart takes on Saugus, another team expected to vie with West Ranch for a league title, and the Wildcats take on Canyon. Both games are April 17.

Canyon 19, Golden Valley 8

Canyon doesn’t have anything to complain about offensively after scoring in every inning of its Foothill League opening win over Golden Valley.

But after letting the Grizzlies climb within 8-5 at one point, and watching them scratch across eight runs, Canyon head coach Tim Melton knows his team still has work to do.

“Coming out of this game I felt like we lost today,” Melton said. “I thought we could have made a strong statement and I think giving up those runs in the top of seventh gave them hope and they believe they can beat us now. Happy on the offensive end, not happy with the pitching and the defense.”

Amanda Doyle continued her hot streak with two home runs in the game, Micayla Aguilar and Julianna Carlos each added three-run homers, too for the Cowboys. Paige Johnson picked up an RBI on a squeeze play.

For Golden Valley, Gabby Thomas was 3-for-4 with three RBIs, Marissa Felix was 4-for-5 with two RBIs, Jessica Luna was 2-for-5 with two RBIs and Jenna Pearlman was 1-for-3 with a home run. Defensively, Emily Smith, who moved from catcher to center this season, was strong in the field and went 1-for-2 from the plate.



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