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Brawley senior helps team break out of league slump

April 23, 2002|By ERIC GALVAN

Sports Writer

For four years Brawley Union High's Leighan Sudduth has been associated with winning teams at Brawley.

Whether as a member of the volleyball team where she won four Imperial Valley League championships or the softball team that won one league crown and never finished any lower than third place in the IVL, Brawley and Sudduth have been successful.

So when this year's Wildcat softball team started 0-3 in league, it was a feeling not familiar to the 18-year-old senior.

"It was pretty frustrating at the beginning of league starting 0-3. I mean, Brawley's always been known to have good teams and to start the way we did was just kind of weird," said Sudduth. "It was tough, it was definitely tough, but I just took all that as a learning experience."

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Sudduth and her teammates responded with two wins last week as they thumped Imperial 6-2 April 16 and knocked off IVL leader Central Union High 3-1Friday.

Sudduth pitched complete games in both contests and held her opponents to only seven total hits and only one earned run.

"In both those games the other teams just made more errors than us and we started hitting," said Sudduth. "And defensively, everyone stepped it up, especially our outfield. Julie Bensen, Trisha Fleming and Karla Price all played really good in the outfield. They made things easier on me when I was pitching."

Sudduth came through offensively, scoring runs in each of the team's wins, including the go-ahead run in the sixth inning against Imperial and the second run against Central.

Now, with a two-game winning streak, Sudduth and her teammates will look to keep things going at 4:15 today at Calexico and try to avenge an earlier loss to Southwest at 3:15 p.m. Friday in Brawley.

"I think both games will be pretty tough. Looking at that Southwest game, I just had a horrible game last time we played and hopefully this time it'll be different," said Sudduth. "We're starting to get things together. Our hitting is coming around and hopefully we'll play a lot better this time than we did that last game."

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