Golden Valley’s infielders crept in as far as they dared.
Pitcher Cassidy Cangemi dared Hart to swing.
With the bases loaded and no outs in Tuesday’s fourth inning, shortstop Sophia Medellin fielded a ground ball and fired home for the first out.
Second baseman Nicole Smart scooped up a second grounder and whipped it to the plate where Vanessa Felix relayed it to first like a seasoned middle infielder.
The Grizzlies escaped the jam, and Cangemi went the distance in a 3-1 home win, striking out seven and erasing memories of Hart’s offensive outbursts against Golden Valley last year.
PHOTOS: Golden Valley hosts Hart
“It was huge,” Golden Valley coach Daniel Soto said of the fourth inning. “I mean, I’m looking at that, and I’m like, ‘Oh, we’re in trouble here.’ I was hoping to get out of there with one or two given up.”
Instead, the score remained tied 1-1 until the sixth inning.
Medellin wasn’t credited with an RBI. But her double, which one-hopped the wall in left, moved Olivia Vasquez to third, allowing her to later score on a passed ball.
Medellin scored on Smart’s sacrifice fly to make it 3-1 Golden Valley.
Cangemi allowed a single in an otherwise quiet seventh, and the Grizzlies (12-8 overall, 3-2 in Foothill) secured their third win in Foothill League play, matching the program record for league wins in a season set by the 2015 squad.
Cangemi, a junior, allowed one earned run on six hits, a vast improvement over her starts against Hart last season when she gave up six and 10 runs, respectively, according to MaxPreps.
“Do you remember the score from last year?” Cangemi asked a reporter.
The scores were 11-10 and 9-6, both Golden Valley wins.
“Oh, my,” said Cangemi, who has allowed two runs in her last 20 Foothill League innings.
In that span, she has struck out 26 and walked 6.
She scored Golden Valley’s first run Tuesday, coming in on a Hart fielding error that would have ended the bottom of the second inning.
That run evened the score after Abby Cunningham drove in Kylie Norwood with a single in the top of the inning.
Norwood finished 2-for-3. She also came in to pitch with two runners on in the bottom of the sixth. Both runners scored and were charged to Mona Trevizo, who was otherwise solid.
Trevizo allowed three hits in five innings of work.
“I thought Mona pitched a great game,” said Hart catcher Aly Kaneshiro. “She kept her composure. She threw to my glove.”
West Ranch 18, Saugus 16
Makenna Harper, Kennedi Sorensen, Adrienne Chang and Delaney Bevan each had three RBIs for West Ranch (9-12, 2-3), which scored nine runs in the bottom of the fourth to answer the 10 runs Saugus scored in the third.
West Ranch finished with 22 hits to Saugus’ 14.
West Ranch’s Sara Olson went 4-for-4 with two RBIs and three runs scored.
Wildcat Megan Wilson got the win in the circle for West Ranch, pitching 3 1/3 innings and allowing one run on three hits.
Cassidy FitzGerald and Sabrina Seeley each had four RBIs for Saugus (13-10, 3-2).
Seeley was 4-for-5 at the plate. Centurion Jessica Cordola went 3-for-5 with two RBIs.
Valencia 7, Canyon 0
Ally Shipman hit two home runs for Valencia (17-7, 5-0), and pitcher Shea O’Leary tossed her fifth straight shutout to open league play.
O’Leary struck out 10 and walked two.
Noel Dominguez went 2-for-3 with two RBIs for Valencia.
Melissa Spencer had both hits for Canyon (10-11-1, 1-4).