Eagles make quick work of Bulldogs

April 21, 2002|By ERIC GALVAN

Sports Writer

With hopes of an Imperial Valley League championship still in sight, the Southwest High softball team continued its league title run, making quick work of Calexico 11-1 in five innings in El Centro on Friday.

Knowing Brawley Union High knocked off Central Union High earlier in the day, Southwest didn't get caught up in the moment. The team stayed focused and took care of business, scoring six runs in the sixth inning to walk away with a 10-run victory.

"Our hitting was on today and that was definitely the key. We were in a bit of a slump with our hitting, but we got out of it today," said Southwest coach Stephanie Niebla. "Coming into this, our girls were ready to play. And today, we played the way we know how to play."


With the win, the Eagles improved to 3-2 in the IVL and are now tied with Central for second place in league and are a game behind league-leading Palo Verde, which beat Imperial 1-0 on Friday.

Throughout the game the Southwest offensive production basically revolved around freshmen Melissa Lerno and Nikki Cordova as the two accounted for the team's first four runs scored in the first and second innings.

After walking to kick off the bottom of the first, Lerno was knocked in on Cordova's single. Two batters later Cordova reached home on a Bulldog defensive error, giving Southwest a 2-0 advantage.

Lerno and Cordova struck again in the second inning, accounting for two more runs. With two outs, Lerno got on base with a single and advanced on a Calexico overthrow to first base, which allowed Stephanie Garcia to reach first base safely. Cordova then came through with a single scoring Lerno to up the deficit to three runs. Garcia added the second run of the inning, scoring on a passed ball to give the Eagles a 4-0 advantage after two.

After Calexico's Eileen Ronquillo scored on a bases-loaded walk in the third to cut the score to 4-1 and Southwest's Melissa Frausto scored on an error in the fifth inning to again up the deficit to four runs, Lerno and Cordova struck again in the sixth.

Cordova drove in the first run of the sixth, knocking in Garcia with a single. Cordova then scored her second run of the game on a Jessica Conway base hit that also scored Frausto.

Following a P.J. Enders walk and a Janai Williams single, Andie Miramontes came through with a two-RBI single, driving in Conway and Enders.

With Williams and Miramontes on base, Shannon Whitman reached first safely on a single, loading the bases for Lerno. Using patience at the plate, Lerno didn't try to end the game on a hit. Instead she waited for the right pitch. That pitch ended up being ball four, which scored Williams to end the game.

For the game, Lerno finished with a single, four walks, two runs and an RBI and Cordova was 3-for-4 with three RBI and two runs.

"We had a good game today. Everyone played well and it was just a good day for the whole team," said Cordova. "Coming into this game we knew that we had to pick it up and we did by playing good defense and coming through with our hitting."

Said Bulldog coach Raul Martinez: "This clearly wasn't our best game played today. We knew that coming into this, if we were going to have a chance, we had to play our best game and we didn't do that. Now we know that if we want to be successful, we're going to have to give a better effort. But give credit to Southwest: They played a good all-around game and did what they needed to do to win."

Southwest (3-2 IVL) plays at Central at 4:15 p.m. Tuesday and Calexico (1-4) hosts Brawley at 4:15 p.m. Tuesday.

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