Softball: Wildcats trounce Vikings 10-0

May 02, 2001|By CHRIS GRANT, Sports Editor

BRAWLEY — The Brawley Union High School softball team crept closer to first place in the Imperial Valley League with a 10-0 pounding of Holtville in five innings here Tuesday.

"We certainly didn't expect this," said Wildcat coach Rahsahn Overton. "We got a big hit at the beginning of the game and that loosened things up."

The big hit came courtesy of starting pitcher Leighan Sudduth, who blasted an inside-the-park home run to right field to lead off the bottom of the first inning.

"That gave us a little more confidence," Sudduth said. "We hadn't been scoring until the sixth inning."

The Wildcats improved to 6-2 in the IVL (14-7 overall). They are chasing first-place Central Union, which is 6-1 and had Tuesday off. Sudduth thinks Tuesday's win was key if Brawley is going to catch the Spartans.


"This will help a lot," she said. "Holtville has a very good team. They are very good competition and it helps to get this win."

One never would have been able to guess early the game was going to get out of hand.

Sudduth hammered her home run off Viking starter Lauren Huyler, but Huyler responded by getting the next three hitters she faced in order.

Sudduth, who faced the minimum 15 hitters in the contest, allowing one hit and striking out four, set Holtville down in order in the second.

Brawley threatened in the bottom of the second, but Huyler escaped unscathed. It wasn't until the third inning that the floodgates opened for the Wildcats.

Sudduth, who had three hits, scored four runs and had two RBIs, led off the inning with a single. Erin Rutherford and Kaylin Rubin followed with base hits and with the aid of two errors on Holtville second baseman Michelle Strahm, the Wildcats put three runs on the board.

Brawley took its 4-0 lead into the bottom of the fourth when Sudduth struck again. This time she walked, stole second, moved to third on an error and scored on a wild pitch.

Brawley's lead was 5-0 when Huyler was replaced by Nina Rivas in the fifth inning.

Rivas did nothing more than pour gasoline on the Wildcat fire, allowing three hits and walking five in two-thirds of an inning.

Annie Smith led off the fifth with a walk and scored the inning's first run, then came back up to end the game with a base hit to score Sudduth.

Reggie Horta finished with two hits for Brawley.

Holtville's lone hit was a leadoff double by Regan Rothfleisch in the third inning.

Sudduth worked out of that minor jam when Trisha Fleming turned a spectacular play. With one out, the Wildcat center fielder made a shoestring catch on a line shot hit by Holtville's Marisella Valenzuela. Fleming then threw to second to double off Rothfleisch and end the Vikings' one legitimate threat.

Even with the win, Overton said many things must fall in place for his squad to get a shot at the IVL title.

"Everything has to fall right," he said. "We still need a lot of practice, but I like the way the girls are gelling.

"This is a good place to be, but you always hope to be on top. We're in a battle and we've got to go out and win it ourselves."

He thinks teamwork will be the key to any success Brawley has the rest of the year.

Overton said, "We win as a team and we lose as a team. As long as we play as a team, I'm happy."

Holtville (10-5-1, 5-3) will be back in action at 4:15 p.m. Friday at home against Southwest. Brawley will next play at 4:15 p.m. Tuesday at Palo Verde in Blythe.

Southwest 4, Imperial 2

IMPERIAL — Lisa Garcia pitched the Southwest High School softball team to a 4-2 win over Imperial here Tuesday.

Garcia worked five innings to earn the win.

Mary Sanders led the Eagle offense with two hits, an RBI and a run scored. Lauren Miramontes had a hit and scored a run for Southwest (5-7, 4-4).

Andrea Thompson took the loss for the Tigers. Lindsay Lugo led Imperial offensively with two hits and a run scored.

Both teams return to action at 4:15 p.m. Friday. Imperial (9-8, 1-7) is at Calexico while Southwest travels to Holtville.

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