The La Mirada High School softball team’s bid for a second CIF-Southern Section Championship was ended at the hands of No. 3-seeded Camarillo, which defeated La Mirada 5-1 in Saturday’s Division 2 championship game.
Click on the link below for the story. Click here for the photo gallery – Camarillo vs. La Mirada, D2 championship
IRVINE – The opportunities were there but the timely hits weren’t for the La Mirada High School softball team on championship Saturday.
The Matadores (22-12) put runners in scoring position in four consecutive innings but only scored once, losing one run under strange circumstances, before falling to No. 3-seeded Camarillo, 5-1, in the CIF-Southern Section Division 2 championship game at Deanna Manning Stadium.
The CIF-SS crown is the second for the Scorpions (26-7) while La Mirada now drops to 1-4 in title games.
“I’m proud of this team,” La Mirada coach Rich Trujillo said. “Nobody expected us to be here and we definitely had a look in this game.”
Maybe the most important and contrasting statistic was the runners-in-scoring-position stat.
Camarillo finished 4 for 7 with four RBIs while La Mirada ended 1 for 10 with one RBI.
The Matadores, however, may put an asterisks next to that number.
La Mirada trailed 5-0 entering the bottom of the sixth but rallied when junior Ambar Hickman reached on an error and scored when freshman Annie Di Pillo ripped a double to center.
The RBI double brought up Ana Pedroza, who singled to right-center field and scored Di Pillo as La Mirada pulled within 5-2 with no outs.
After the hit, though, Camarillo skipper Jack Willard protested that La Mirada had batted out of turn.
“I thought something was wrong an inning earlier but wasn’t going to say anything as long as the girls kept making outs,” Willard said. “Once they got that hit, I protested.”
After a 10-minute delay, La Mirada’s Rochelle Sablay (who was illegally hit for by Pedroza) was ruled out and Di Pillo was sent back to second as the scored regressed to 5-1.
“It was my mistake for not checking the home plate umpire’s scorecard,” Trujillo said. “I told him that (Pedroza) was going in for No. 13 (Mylee Macahilig) and he wrote down No. 12 (Sablay). I know what I was doing but didn’t check his card.”
The Matadores still had a chance, however, as pitcher Sarah Shadinger walked Lindsey Cole and Becca Rice in between a fielder’s choice from Mercedes Gasparovic to load the bases with two outs.
Yet, Shadinger survived when Pedroza grounded out to second.
“We didn’t get the hits and they did,” said Gasparovic, who recorded nine put outs and led two double plays. “I’m proud to have made it this far.”
La Mirada also had golden chances in the second and third.
A Sablay double sandwiched between two walks loaded the bases in the second with one out. Yet, the Matadores hit into a force play at the plate followed by an infield pop up.
In the third, Macahilig doubled but was stranded at third with one out.
“This was a great experience for everyone coming back,” La Mirada reliever Jenevie Rivas said. “Camarillo just played better and we’ll learn from this.”
The Scorpions’ Kristie Dederick doubled home Jenna King in the fourth to put Camarillo up 2-0.
The Scorpions scored two more runs in the fifth on RBI singles from King and Shelbie Franc and an additional run in the sixth on an RBI single from Dederick.
Camarillo started the scoring with a homer from Bianca Noriega in the second off Hickman (12-6).
Shadinger (19-5) picked up the win by allowing one run on four hits while stranding nine.