Holtville stuns Spartans

April 17, 2002|By RICHARD MYERS

Sports Editor

Almost a year ago to the day Central Union High's softball team surrendered a run in Imperial Valley League action

Eighteen straight shutouts followed.

But not 19, as visiting Holtville shocked the host Spartans on Tuesday, winning decisively 5-0.

"That's definitely a big win for us," Holtville coach David Rodgers said. "Central is a good team."

So is Holtville, which coincidentally happens to be the last team to score on the Spartans.

"It was in the first round of league," Central coach Sandy Montalvo said.

Central won the game 2-1 en route to capturing the IVL title.

That game last year was in Holtville. Tuesday's game was in El Centro.

"I honestly can't remember when the last time we gave up a run in league on our field," Montalvo conceded.


Central has been that dominant. Tuesday Holtville was the dominant team.

"You have to give them credit," Montalvo said of the Vikings. "They outplayed us."

Holtville collected 11 hits while Viking hurler Lauren Huyler limited Central to two.

"I just wanted to stay relaxed and pitch my game," Huyler said. "I knew I had a good defense backing me up."

Huyler ended up striking out seven and walking two as she outpitched her Central counterpart, Nicky Carrion.

"Nicky's spin wasn't there," Montalvo said. "And they were able to get a bat on the ball."

Carrion was lifted in the sixth inning. She gave up 10 hits and two walks while fanning five.

"I thought Guzman came in and threw hard," Montalvo said of reliever Marissa Guzman.

She pitched shutout ball for one and two-thirds of an inning but the damage had been done.

Holtville broke Central's shutout string in the third inning with one run. Melissa Strahm got aboard with a two-out double to left field and scored on Jessica Young's single up the middle.

"I thought that run might wake us up, but it didn't," Montalvo said.

The Spartans still struggled at the plate, then they saw Holtville break the game wide open with four runs in the sixth.

Young led off the sixth with a base hit up the middle and Claudia Lopez got aboard with a bloop hit down the right field line. Marisela Valenzuela followed with a single up the middle to load the bases.

Cindy Lopez made it 2-0 with a single to right and Myra Medel doubled to left to drive in two more. Huyler knocked in the final run on a fielder's choice.

The Vikings put runners aboard in every inning but one, including the lead runner in four of the seven innings.

Medel doubled and singled, Young, Valenzuela and Cindy Lopez all had two hits, Strahm had a double and Huyler and Claudia Lopez both added base hits.

Monica Sandoval doubled for Central and Guzman singled.

"The girls were determined that they were going to win," Rodgers said. "They really wanted this game."

Central (10-8 overall, 3-1 IVL) plays at 3:15 p.m. Friday at Brawley. Holtville (11-4, 3-2) plays at 4:15 p.m. Tuesday at Palo Verde.

Palo Verde 2, Southwest 1

PALO VERDE — Southwest High's softball team lost 2-1 in the bottom of the seventh inning.

The Eagles collected just four hits — singles by Nikki Cordova, Melissa Frausto, Jessica Conway and P.J. Enders.

Southwest (9-8 overall, 2-2 IVL) hosts Calexico at 4:15 p.m. Friday.

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