San Dimas’ Kayla Norrie hit a two-run homer, had four hits, six RBIs and was a triple short of a cycle to lead San Dimas (17-7, 12-2) to a 15-5 rout over Northview (18-6, 12-2) in six innings to move into a first-place tie in the Valle Vista. In other big games, Duarte (12-6, 10-1) came back and beat Azusa (15-5, 10-2) 6-5 and can clinch the Montview league title with a win over Workman on Thursday. In the Sierra League, Ayala (24-4, 8-1) took a one game lead over Glendora (19-5, 7-2), though the Tartans will meet them again on Thursday at home in hopes of sharing the title.
Above: San Dimas junior shortstop Aleena Avalos reached base all five times in Tuesday’s win.
Story: Ayala 2, Glendora 0
Story: Duarte 6, Azusa 5
By Fred J. Robledo, Staff Writer
San Dimas High School catcher Kayla Norrie calls it late season team bonding while shortstop Aleena Avalos said when the Saints turn it on, there is no turning it back off.
Whatever the reason, late season charges have come to define the Saints in recent years, and they’re doing it again. San Dimas, who has reached the CIF-Southern Section Division 5 semifinals the past three years and the championship game last year, mercied rival Northview 15-5 in six innings on Thursday to move into a first-place tie in the Valle Vista League with the Vikings, though the tiebreaker goes to the Saints after taking two-of-three in the season series. (To continue, click thread).
San Dimas (17-7, 12-2) can clinch its share of the league title with a win over Pomona in Thursday’s finale while the Vikings (18-6, 12-2) take on Covina in hopes of sharing it with them.
The Saints have won seven straight since opening the season 4-5.
In 2009 they started 3-3 and won ten straight before losing in the championship.
In 2008 they started 5-5 and won nine straight before losing in the semifinals.
In 2007 they started 4-3 and won 18 straight before losing in the semifinals.
You have to ask, what’s in store this year?
“That’s our M.O., and I’ll take it,” Saints coach Don Pollard said. “Each year you wonder why it shakes out like this, why it takes so long, and here we go again. You see the light bulb go on, the girls are swinging harder, diving for loose balls and focusing on every pitch. It’s fun to watch.”
The top three in San Dimas’ order reached base 14 of 15 plate appearances and accounted for eight runs.
Leadoff hitter Sara Moore had three hits and scored three times.
Avalos had three hits, reached base five times and scored three runs.
Then there was Norrie, who belted a two-run homer in the fifth inning and finished with four hits and six RBIs, finishing a triple short of a cycle.
“I didn’t know I had a day like that, but the plan was to be aggressive,” Norrie said. “If the first pitch was there, we wanted to go after it. We didn’t want to wait.”
Avalos said when the top of the order swings like this, everything else falls into place.
“It’s important we set a tone,” she said. “When we’re getting hits and getting on base, everyone else gets in a rhythm too.”
After allowing two runs in the first, the Vikings scored three runs in the bottom half to take a 3-2 lead, but the Saints countered with four runs in the second to go up 6-3.
The Vikings stayed within 7-4 going into the fifth, but the Saints scored six runs to take a commanding 13-4 lead.
“We picked a bad day to play bad softball,” Vikings coach Jeff Butler said. “(Pitcher) Chrissy (McPhail) wasn’t very sharp and our defense wasn’t sharp, we made a few errors.
“We hit the ball hard and scored some runs, but they hit it hard too and played very well. You can’t hang your head over it, if we beat Covina we’re still league champs then we will go to the playoffs and see if we can’t win a few games.”