Southern California's High School Sports Blog

Softball: So Cal Roundup (4/26/18) La Habra Creates More Freeway Mayhem

Grand Canyon-bound Savannah Tourville of La Habra. Photo/Manny Alvarez.

The So Cal Roundup for Thursday, April 26.

Long Island-bound Elena Valenzuela knew Sunny Hills of Fullerton needed a big day with the bats with Tennessee Chattanooga-bound itcher Mariah Ramirez out with tendinitis.

Valenzuela did her job by keeping the Lancers off the scoreboard and Grand Canyon-bound Savannah Tourville took advantage and knocked in four runs to lead La Habra to an 8-1 Freeway League victory on Thursday at La Habra High.

The victory just made an unpredictable Freeway League more interesting with four league games left. La Habra, (14-4, 4-2) is now a game behind Sunny Hills (17-4, 5-1), tied for second place with Sonora of La Habra (18-4, 4-2) and one ahead of Troy of Fullerton (16-8, 3-3).

Sunny Hills, ranked No. 6 in Orange County and No. 18 in So Cal by So Cal Sidelines, tried to get off to a quick start thanks to a lead-off double by Alana Backstrom, who moved to third base on a sacrifice and went home on a tag thanks to a fly by Maryland-bound Taylor Okada. But the Lancers batted out of order, declaring Okada out. Backstrom went back to third base and was left stranded.

La Habra scored in the bottom half of the first inning on a sacrifice RBI grounder from Tourville that scored Biola-commit Rilee Ruvalcaba.

La Habra added more runs off freshman pitcher Abbie Landrum in the third inning after loading the bases with two outs for Alexis Hernandez, who had a bases-clearing double to left, but Hernandez was out trying to stretch for a triple. That was all Valenzuela needed to get the Highlanders back in the league title race. Valenzuela threw a complete game, striking out three, walking one and giving up one run to get the victory.

“Elena pitched a great game,” Tourville said. “We all had her back. We haven’t been playing much as a team, but we definitely did today. We got hits when we needed too. We had some great diving plays of defense. Elena performance was huge. It got everyone confidence up. We really jumped on them after that. Our hitting came through and it was a great momentum. It was a great team win.”

Sunny Hills put Taylor Barraza on the mound in the fourth inning, but it was deja vu all over again. The Highlanders had the bases loaded with two outs again, but it was Tourville who cleared the bases with a double to left to make it 7-0. Samantha Franck sent Tourville home on a single to center to make it 8-0. The Lancers brought Landrum back on the mound the next inning, but it was too little too late.

“I don’t think today’s game was about pitching,” Sunny Hills coach Jon Caffrey said. “Our freshman did a great job. We just didn’t make plays behind her. She held them down, she held a Division 1 school in La Habra to four runs with errors. Had we made plays behind her, I wouldn’t have had to pull her out in the fourth for a girl who isn’t ready to pitch, who had to pitch last week. It was more about us today. We came in with a wrong mentality, we didn’t score runs, we didn’t move runners, we didn’t take good cuts at the plate, we were bad at the plate today and we were bad defensively. I don’t know if they were down because Mariah was out, but our freshman girl came in and did an amazing job against a very good team.”

Ruvalcaba went 3 for 4 with two runs, Franck went 3 for 4 with an RBI, Hernandez was 2 for 4 with the three-run double and Toureville went 1 for 3 with a double and four RBI for La Habra, whose final four league games mean a lot more than they did before Thursday’s game as the Highlanders look to win four league titles in a row.

“Every game at this point is a must-win for us,” La Habra coach Kevin Helms said. “Sonora is coming around the corner and we definitely need to get the next one on them. Savy (Tourville) is our anchor, our shortstop. She’s one of our seniors and one of our team captains. I’m completely confident in her ability on how she runs her team. She’s a big help to me as a rookie coach.”

Backstrom went 3 for 4 with a double and an RBI and Landrum threw five innings to take the loss for the Lancers, who host Fullerton, ranked No. 20 in the OC, on Tuesday. Sunny Hills hopes to get Ramirez back on Tuesday with the league getting tighter.

“This game just put everybody in it,” Caffrey said. “We had an amazing first half, but we certainly didn’t sit back and say we are just going to coast through this. We know Fullerton is a great team, Troy is a great team and Sonora is a great team. We know we have to go in this and battle. Every game is going to be just like today. Hopefully, we get Mo (Ramirez) back on Tuesday fr Fullerton and we’ll go from there. We’re a different team with Mo, there’s no doubt about it. SHe’s our leading hitter and our stud on the mound, but we have to battle better than we did today.”

La Habra heads to Troy, ranked No. 19 in the OC, on Tuesday as looks to take one game at a time and get some help with the hope of being tied for first place.

“We just have to keep playing as a team and have Elena back,” Tourville said. “We need to get hits when we need to. I think we will be fine. We have to stay calm and stay humble. We got this.”



In the language of the players, good hitting baseball and softball teams can really “rake” at the plate.

Year in and year out, Rancho Buena Vista of Vista’s softball team is one of the better rakers around.

The Longhorns came into Thursday’s Avocado League East game at home with a .383 team batting average, the highest in the 12-year run of coach Theresa Murillo.

After Mission Hills of San Marcos opened the game with Washington-bound Ari Quinones’ solo home run, the rakers took over.

Rancho Buena Vista collected 12 hits and took advantage of five errors by the Grizzlies for a 13-2 victory in a game stopped after 4.5 innings because of the mercy rule.

It was the second time this season the Longhorns (12-9, 4-1) have battered the Grizzlies (16-10, 2-4), going back to a 16-2 win on Apr. 10.

“The older kids teach the younger kids how RBV plays softball,” said Murillo, whose team has beaten Mission Hills five straight times. “We focus on hitting every day and the kids are not afraid to swing at pitches.”

Rancho Buena Vista answered Quinones’ blast with a pair of first-inning runs.

The hosts tallied five times in the second inning and five more in the third inning as 11 Longhorns batted to push the lead to 12-1 after three innings.

Senior catcher Dani Ellis was 2 for 2 with four RBI. Sophomore slapper Dee Herrmann was 3 for 4, followed by junior Shaelee Perkins (2 for 4 with 1 RBI), junior Kaylee Hull and senior Monica Padilla, who were both 2 for 3.

Arizona-committed freshman Paige Dimler was 0 for 2, but drove in runs on a walk and a sacrifice fly, giving her 34 for the season.

“In facing teams like San Marcos, you have to hit the ball or they’ll beat you,” Murillo said. “I tell the girls all the time to think of every team you’re facing as being as good as San Marcos. You can’t play down to a team. I don’t ask them to bunt a lot. Swing away. I want them to hit the ball.”

In her 12th season as head coach, Murillo’s Longhorns have batted over .300 10 times. The other two years were .283 and .298. They have proven they can really rake.


In the Avocado-East League:

San Marcos 12, Oceanside 0: Notre Dame-bound Payton Tidd tossed a no-hitter with four strikeouts in five innings and Mia Cunnings, Utah State-bound Lexi Orozco and Arizona State-commit Cydney Sanders all homered to lead the Knights (20-2, 6-0) past the Pirates (5-11-1, 1-5). San Marcos, ranked No. 2 in San Diego and No. 4 in So Cal, has hit a CIF-SDS record 41 home run on the season.

In the Baseline League:

Etiwanda 4, St. Lucy’s of Glendora 2: Natalie Gonzalez went 2 for 3 with two RBI to help the Eagles (19-5, 5-2), ranked No. 6 in the IE, take down the Regents (9-13, 1-5).

In the Empire League:

Pacifica of Garden Grove 5, Valencia of Placentia 0: Alani Nguyen and Jacquelyn Biker drobe intwo runs apiece for the Mariners (15-9, 4-2), ranked No. 13 in the OC, who avenged one of their league losses with the win over the Tigers (9-14, 4-2), ranked No. 12 in the OC.

Kennedy of La Palma 16, Western of Anaheim 1: Hope International-bound Skylar Mao homered and drove in five runs for the Fighting Irish (15-5, 7-0), ranked No. 8 in the OC.

In the Foothill League:

Valencia of Magic Mountain 6, Hart of Newhall 0: Texas-bound Shea O’Leary tossed a four-hitter with seven strikeouts and Tennessee-bound Ally Shipman went 2 for 2 wih a homer and three runs for the Vikes (20-7, 6-0), ranked No. 4 in LA and No. 14 in So Cal.

Saugus 12, Canyon of Canyon Country 2: San Diego State-commit Jessica Cordola and UC Davis-commit Libbie McMahan homered for the Centurions (14-7, 3-3), ranked No. 14 in LA.

In the Freeway League:

Troy of Fullerton 17, Buena Park 2: Jocelyn Alcala went 3 for 4 with a double, a homer, three runs and four RBI and Ivana Perez went 4 for 4 with a duble, a homer, four runs and three RBI for the Warriors (16-8, 3-3), ranked No. 19 in the OC.

Sonora of La Habra 9, Fullerton 0: Gaige Garcia and Mackenzie Shaw homeed for the Raiders (18-4, 4-2), ranked No. 10 in the OC, in the win over the Tribe (14-9, 2-4), ranked No. 20 in the OC.

In the Hacienda League:

Los Altos of Hacienda Heights 13, Diamond Ranch of Pomona 3

In the Marine League:

Carson 10, George Washington Prep of Los Angeles 0: Samantha Noriega hit a grand slam and drove in five runs to lift the Colts (20-7, 8-0), ranked No. 17 in LA.

Banning of Wilmington 10, Gardena 0: Boise State-commit Angelina Devoe threw a no-hitter with 13 strikeouts amd Topanga Zamora went 3 for 3 with a double, two runs and five RBI for the Pilots (17-8-1, 6-2).

In the Marmonte League:

Calabasas 3, Westlake of Westlake Village 2: Ohio State-bound Jessica Ross threw an eight-hitter with two walks and nine strikeouts for the Coyotes (13-7, 3-3), ranked No. 15 in LA.

In the Metro Mesa League:

Eastlake of Chula Vista 6, Otay Ranch of Chula Vista 2: Keila Bosinger went 1 for 3 with a homer and two RBI to help the Titans (14-7-1, 3-3), ranked No. 12 in San Diego, defeat the Mustangs (7-13-1, 0-6).

In the Mountain Pass League:

Hemet 8, Beaumont 7: Andrea Thompson went 2 for 4 with a double, a run and three RBI as the Bulldogs (14-11, 4-2) knocked off the Cougars (13-8, 5-1), ranked No. 18 in the IE.

In the Pacific League:

Crescenta Valley of La Crescenta 30, Glendale 0: Freshman Dee Dee Hernandez tossed a perfect game with seven strikeouts in five innings and went 5 for 5 for the Falcons (20-2, 9-1), ranked No. 8 in LA.

In the Palomar League:

Westview of San Diego 5, Poway 4: Danielle Erickson, who went 3 for 3, drove in Addison Boyd with a single in the bottom of the sixth to help the Wolverines (7-14, 3-3) upset the Titans (17-4-1, 5-1), ranked No. 3 in San Diego.

Del Norte of San Diego 6, Rancho Bernardo of San Diego 3: Oregon State-commit Val Pero went 2 for 3 with a homer and three RBI for the Nighthawks (11-11, 4-3) in the victory over the Broncos (12-10, 4-3).

Mt. Carmel of San Diego 8, Mission Vista of Oceanside 3: Lauren Anderson went 3 for 5 with a run and three RBI, Mackenna Gentry went 3 for 4 with two runs and an RBI and Ally Troche went 3 for 5 with a triple, two runs and an RBI for the Sundevils (14-5, 3-3), ranked No. 17 in San Diego.

In the Palomares League:

Ayala of Chino Hills 10, South Hills of West Covina 7: Hannah Hughbanks went 5 for 5 with two runs and three RBI and Kaylee Moore went 3 for 4 with a double, a homer, two runs and four RBI as the Bulldogs (12-9, 5-6) defeated the Huskies (15-6-1, 8-3).

In the River Valley League:

Ramona of Riverside 14, Norte Vista of Riverside 7: Bri Lopez went 2 for 5 with three RBI and Celene Alvarez and Alex Tovar homered for the Rams (15-7, 9-2).

In the San Gabriel Valley League:

Gahr of Cerritos 12, Dominguez of Compton 0: Daisy Torres threw a no-hitter with 10 strikeouts and one walk in five innings and UCLA-commit Taylor Stephens went 2 for 3 with a triple, a homer, two runs and four RBI for the Gladiators (18-4, 6-0), ranked No. 1 in LA and No. 2 in So Cal.

In the South Coast League:

Aliso Niguel of Aliso Viejo 3, Laguna Hills 2: Emmeline Kim drove in Amanda Johnston with a two-out single in the bottom of the eighth to give the Wolverines (18-6, 5-1), ranked No. 10 in the OC, the win over the Hawks (11-7, 2-3).

Mission Viejo 12, Capistrano Valley of Mission Viejo 1: Delaware-commit Taylor Deden went 3 for 3 with two bombs and five RBI for the Diablos (11-6, 4-2), ranked No. 15 in the OC.

In the Southwestern League:

Murrieta Mesa 7, Great Oak of Temecula 2: Maisyn Cadena went 1 fpr 3 with a double, a run and three RBI and Idaho State-bound Autumn Pease threw a four-hitter with 10 strikeouts for the Rams (17-7, 5-1), ranked No. 4 in the IE and No. 15 in So Cal, in the win over the Wolfpack (19-4, 5-1), ranked No. 3 in the IE and No. 13 in So Cal, to create a tie for first place.

In the Suburban League:

La Mirada 6, Norwalk 0: Utah-commit Leilani Melendez went 2 for 4 with two doubles, a run and two RBI for the Matadores (16-9, 7-2), ranked No. 18 in LA.

Cerritos 13, Bellflower 4: Alyanna Hernandez went 2 for 4 with two doubles and five RBI for the Dons (14-4, 8-0), ranked No. 16 in LA.

Mayfair of Lakewood 13, Glenn of Norwalk 0: Sydney Soto went 5 for 5 with a homer, four runs and four RBI, Sarah Clausen went 2 for 4 with two doubles, three runs and five RBI and Liz Faulkner went 2 for 2 with two runs and four RBI for the Monsoons (13-5, 5-2).

In the Summit League:

High Tech of Chula Vista 8. High Tech of San Diego 3: Bela Guerrero, Arlene Martinez, Paulina Guerrero and Jaiden Norris had two hits apiece for the Bruins (12-2, 2-0) in the win over the Storm (7-12, 2-1).

In the Sunset League:

Los Alamitos 12, Edison of Huntington Beach 4: Freshman Sophia Nugent went 2 for 4 with a double, a grand slam and five RBI for the Griffins (23-1, 7-0), ranked No. 1 in the OC and No. 3 in So Cal, in the victory over the Chargers (11-9, 3-4), ranked No. 18 in the OC.

Huntington Beach 4, Marina of Huntngton Beach 2: Missouri-commit Grace Uribe threw a seven-hitter with nine strikeouts and Columbia-commit Megan Ryono went 3 for 3 with a double and an RBI to lift the Oilers (17-7, 7-1), ranked No. 4 in the OC and No. 11 in So Cal, over the Vikings (11-12, 2-5), ranked No. 17 in the OC.

In nonleague games:

Esperanza of Anaheim 9, Foothill of Santa Ana 1: San Jose State-bound Chrys Hildebrand allowed one hit andK’d nine in four scoreless innings and went 3 for 3 with a double andan RBI for the Aztecs (17-4), ranked No. 5 in the OC and No. 12 in So Cal.

Yorba Linda 2, El Dorado of Placentia 0: UT Arlington-bound Allie Gardiner pitched a four-hitter with one walk and five strikeouts for the Mustangs (13-5), ranked No. 16 in the OC.

(NOTE: Send your scores, highlights, stats, pics and vids each night before 9:30 p.m. (the earlier the better) via email at text at 949-606-3602 or Twitter @SoCalSidelines to be included in the So Cal Roundup)

Follow us on Twitter @SoCalSidelines.


You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply