Loading the bases after an intentional walk, Valencia head coach Donna Lee gave Alexis Genovese the greenlight for the suicide squeeze.
“We had a big seventh inning,” Lee said. “They had the bases loaded and we were able to get the double play. And then we hit a triple and an intentional walk and that’s when I gave Lexi the sign.”
Winning in the bottom of the seventh in dramatic fashion, Valencia (21-7 overall, 7-0 in Foothill League) softball defeated Saugus Thursday afternoon at Valencia, 3-2.
Bringing in two runs on a sacrifice fly in the first inning and a fielder’s choice in the third inning, Noel Dominguez put the Vikings up 2-0 after three.
In the fourth, Saugus (16-8, 4-4) was able to tie up the game at two, thanks to a double by Clarissa Ellwein that allowed the runner to score from first and a line-drive ball to Valencia’s right fielder that was mishandled, allowing another runner to score on an error.
It wasn’t until the seventh that the Centurions were able to get runners in scoring position. Unfortunately, with the bases loaded, Vikings’ pitcher Shea O’Leary was able to force a double-play to get of the inning without surrendering a run.
O’Leary pitched a complete game, giving up one earned run on six hits and striking out 10.
“Shea didn’t have her best game nor did she have her worst,” Lee said about O’Leary’s complete game. “Her teammates picked her up when she needed it and she fought through it. That’s what a good team is supposed to do.”
In the final frame, Genovese laid down the suicide squeeze to win the game for the Vikings, 3-2.
“It was a battle today against Valencia,” Archer said. “We just came up short, but I thought that we had good energy and played a really good game.”
The Vikings remain undefeated in league and will take on the second-place Grizzlies Tuesday at Valencia, while the Centurions will have a double-header tomorrow against Camarillo at Saugus with game times set for 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.
Golden Valley 9, Canyon 5
In a complete team effort Thursday afternoon, the Grizzlies were able to stave off the Cowboys at Golden Valley to improve to 18-3 overall and 6-2 in Foothill League play.
Going 4-for-4 on the night with three singles, a double, one run scored and an RBI, Grizzlies head coach Daniel Soto praised third baseman, Jasmine Carbajal.
“To me the star of the game was Jasmine,” said Golden Valley head coach Daniel Soto via email. “She just made our offense go!”
Allowing three runs in the top of the fifth inning, Golden Valley pitcher Cassidy Cangemi leaned on her offense to score more runs.
Thanks to Shawnti Shannon’s three-run double, the Grizzlies were able to score seven of the nine runs in the bottom of the fifth.
“She has had some huge hits for us and she continued her hot hitting,” Soto said. “When you get that kind of production from the bottom of your lineup, it is a positive that can’t be described and she has been that and then some.”
Canyon’s Jordan De Young and Kate Post each had two RBIs on the night with Melissa Spencer adding one.
Golden Valley will face off against Valencia at Valencia on Tuesday, while Canyon will play the same day against West Ranch at Canyon.