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COC softball eliminated from playoffs

Posted: May 4, 2014 9:06 p.m.
Updated: May 4, 2014 9:06 p.m.

College of the Canyons softball needed a big turnaround on Sunday in order to keep its playoff run alive.

Instead, it got more of the same as a day prior, which wasn’t good enough to keep the season going.

The Cougars saw their short postseason reach its endpoint on Sunday with a 9-1 loss at College of the Desert, which resulted in a two-game sweep in the best-of-three series.

The California Community College Athletic Association Regional first-round began Saturday with COC’s 6-1 loss to Desert. In that game, the No. 14 seed Cougars (22-19) racked up nine hits and loaded the bases on three separate occasions but had very little to show for it.

In Sunday’s game, it was another six hits for COC, but seemingly none of them when it mattered most.

“We just didn’t have timely hits, and that’s where it hurt us,” said COC head coach John Wissmath.

This was COC’s third straight playoff appearance after winning the Western State Conference, Blue Division a third time in a row.

Yet this time, COC made it this far with a younger team that boasted just three sophomore starters. The rest were freshmen.

That youth showed this weekend against the No. 3 seed Desert (36-6).

It took Desert just seven hits to rack up its nine runs on Sunday thanks partly to four COC errors and four walks issued by COC pitchers.

Cougars starter Milana Casillas struggled with her control and gave up six runs, five earned, off four hits and three walks in her two innings of work.

“We just didn’t get enough strikes thrown there and they capitalized on some big hits,” Wissmath said. “We didn’t play very well defensively either. We kicked the ball around a little bit.”

On the other hand, Desert pitcher Natalie Padilla was rock solid, pitching all six innings of the game and allowing the one earned run off a Sierra Quiala RBI double in the fourth inning.

Desert scored two in the first, and four in the third to take an early 6-0 lead. After COC’s score, Desert then added a run in the fourth and two more in the sixth to cap the scoring.

For COC, three key sophomore players will move on in catcher Adrianna Correa, outfielder Ashley Sandoval-Colon and utility player Karlee Bickford.

“They came through and we took care of business when we were supposed to take care of business to get us to the postseason,” Wissmath said.


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