Southwest's Lopez gets her first win

April 10, 2002|By ERIC GALVAN

Sports Writer

HOLTVILLE — After failing to notch a victory all year, Southwest High softball pitcher Monica Lopez looked to break into the win column against Holtville in Imperial Valley League play here Tuesday.

Lopez and Southwest got that win as they downed Holtville 10-1.

"This was a big win for her. She hadn't picked up a win so far and for her to get it is just a real confidence-booster," said Eagle coach Stephanie Niebla. "Before the game and during she was just so excited about pitching today. And she came through."

Lopez allowed five hits, struck out three and walked two in seven innings.

"Everyone on the team was working together really well. I thought we played really good, especially after coming off spring break," said Lopez. "This is the way we want to be playing. And I think it is possible for us to keep it up the rest of the year.


"We have a very young team with mostly freshmen, sophomores and juniors and we're still doing pretty good out there," said Lopez. "I was very proud of how this team played today."

Leading the Eagle offense were Melissa Frausto and Melissa Lerno, who both went 2-for-4. Frausto finished with a run and an RBI and Lerno scored three runs and drove in one. Andy Miramontes went 1-for-3 with a double, two RBI and two runs and Jessica Conway was 1-for-4.

Holtville's Lauren Huyler pitched a complete game, striking out six, walking three and allowing seven hits.

The Eagles opened with a run in the first when Lerno scored on a Lopez sacrifice. Things really got rolling in the third and fourth innings as Southwest (2-0 IVL) scored six runs. Lerno scored on an error and Lopez came home on a Nikki Cordova single in the third. Cordova scored on a Conway ground out.

In the fourth, Miramontes and Lerno both came home on a Viking error and Frausto scored on a fielder's choice to give the Eagles a 7-0 advantage.

Southwest added three more in the seventh as Diana Verduzco and Janai Williams scored on a Miramontes double. Miramontes later scored on a Lerno single.

The Vikings' lone run came in the fifth as Regan Rothfliesch scored on a fielder's choice.

Leading the Holtville offense was Michelle Strahm, who went 3-for-4 with a triple. Twin sisters Claudia and Cindy Lopez recorded the other hits for the Vikings (1-2 IVL).

Said Holtville coach David Rodgers: "Mistakes and errors kept compounding and really hurt us. But I have to hand it to Southwest. They hit the ball in play and made plays on defense.

"This is something we definitely have to learn from. Once we learn from it, we have to put it behind us as quickly as possible," added Rodgers.

Southwest plays at Imperial at 4:15 today and Holtville will host Calexico at 4:15 p.m. Friday.

Central 1 Palo Verde 0

Liz Lechuga drove in the winning run in the bottom of the 11th inning as Central Union High's softball team edged visiting Palo Verde High 1-0 in El Centro on Tuesday.

"This is the third year in a row we've gone extra innings with Palo Verde," Spartans coach Sandy Montalvo said.

With two outs in the 11th, Vanessa Long walked and Claudia Maldonado blooped a single just behind the second base bag. Lechuga followed with a blast into the gap in left center that hit the fence.

"All three girls scored, but you only count the first run," Montalvo said.

Nicky Carrion was tough on the mound for Central. She allowed two hits and struck out eight, but more important, Montalvo said, was that she walked just two batters.

"That's pretty awesome in itself for 11 innings," Montalvo added.

Defense was the story, according to Montalvo. Second baseman Monica Sandoval came back after being hit in the face by a pitch before spring break and had nine assists and three putouts.

Left fielder Long made a spectacular catch over her head with her back to the infield and right fielder Rachel Montalvo also made a tough play.

Central (8-8 overall, 2-0 IVL) hosts Imperial at 4:15 p.m. Friday.

Calexico 4, Imperial 1

IMPERIAL — Iliana Melendez and Geovana Martel both doubled and singled Tuesday to lead Calexico High's softball team to a 4-1 win over host Imperial.

Linda Mendoza, Eileen Ronquillo and Melissa Noriega all added hits for Calexico.

Lindsay Lugo took the loss for Imperial (9-7, 1-1 IVL), going 4 1/3 innings.

Melissa Medina led the Tiger offense in going 2-for-4 with a triple and a run. Stephanie Ortega had an RBI for Imperial.

Calexico (5-7, 1-2 IVL) plays at 4:15 p.m. Thursday at Holtville. Imperial hosts Imperial at 4:15 today.

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