In the fourth inning, the Trinity Classical Academy softball players didn’t know the score in its game against Santa Clarita Valley International. But they knew they were close to a win.
“Our coach doesn’t usually tell us the score,” said catcher Mary MacAdam. “They want us at a 0-0 mentality, but hearing OK, we’re not mercy-ing them and we want to try to finish this game out strong, I think we were encouraged and people started noticing. Like 10 runs left, nine runs left, eight runs left and then that just kind of picked up on itself, honestly.”
The Knights were able to generate nine runs in that inning to beat the Stallions 15-4 in five innings. It was SCVi’s first loss of the season.
It was Trinity’s second win of the season and one that came at a crucial time. The Knights (2-4 overall, 0-3 in Heritage League) will resume league play on Thursday against a Faith Baptist team riding a two-game win streak.
“It’s been nice for them to really be able to see that they can play and feel encouraged,” said coach Craig Massetto. “They get out here and hit and then they all want to keep going, so it’s encouraging for them and I’m just hoping that they can take that into our next league games coming up.”
Trinity was able to score one run in the first inning then picked up the pace of hitting in the second. Emma Cunningham grounded out to score Katie Stimson, then Catie Robertson drove in Tamar Tchilingirian to give the Knights a 3-0 lead.
The Stallions (4-1 overall, 3-0 in Omega League) were able to get on the board in the third inning. Kylie Martinez reached second base on an error, allowing Jordyn Rolfe to cross home plate.
Heidi Schafer had the first big hit of the third inning for Trinity with an RBI double. Robertson followed up with a two-run single for a 6-1 advantage.
Beatriz Panduro was walked to score Halleigh Ritter in the top of the fourth. Martinez cracked a two-run single for the final Stallion runs of the inning and game.
“We are a slow-starting team, normally,” said SCVi coach Ken Erenberg. “It’s weird. We’ve fallen not behind, but we haven’t really started fast in the last few games.”
The Knights exploded in the bottom of the fourth inning, scoring nine runs. MacAdam got on base with a single, then Elizabeth Craw drove her in with a single. Schafer had a single on an error to push MacAdam across home plate, then Stimson hit a single to score Corrine Sandifer.
Cunningham grounded out for a run, then Robertson followed up with a triple on an error to score two.
“I think we realized we really had to get it down to seal out the mercy in that inning,” Robertson said. “So we were very focused and coach says hitting is contagious, so once one person hits, we all want to beat each other and help each other out.”
Robertson went 2-for-3 on the afternoon and had a solid day in the circle, too, recording 12 strikeouts. She’s quickly excelled as a pitcher after picking up the position just last season.
“Last year over the summer she decided she wanted to pitch and she’s done a lot,” Masseto said. “She’s gotten stronger, she’s getting older. Her control is really coming around. She’s a pretty solid player.”
Craw and MacAdam both went 3-for-4 at the plate. MacAdam, a senior, was pleased with her performance as she’d been struggling as of late when it came to hitting.
“I’ve kind of been overthinking it at the plate,” MacAdam said. “I hadn’t been hitting so well, so I wanted to come out today strong knowing that we had just won our first game, so that was something that was definitely in the back of my mind. I wanted to make a difference this game.”
Trinity plays Faith Baptist on Thursday at Faith Baptist at 3:30 p.m. SCVi hosts Gorman Learning Charter at 3 p.m. on the same day.