Central Valley’s and Ceres High’s softball programs earned wins during the opening week of league play.
The Hawks improved to 4-1 overall and 1-0 in the Central California Conference after rallying for a 6-3 victory over the visiting Atwater Falcons on Friday in Ceres.
Central Valley leftfielder Priscilla Hamidat secured the win with an over-the-shoulder catch with two runners on and two outs in the top of the seventh inning.
“It was what our team needed in that moment,” Hawks’ new head coach Jimmy Bates said. “It was an incredible play. From the dugout, I thought we were in trouble when it was first hit.”
Central Valley’s Janessa Godinez improved her pitching record to 4-0.
She allowed two earned runs and five hits with three strikeouts and three walks in seven innings.
The Hawks totaled nine hits on offense.
Godinez batted 1-for-3 from the plate with one double, one RBI and one run.
Hamidat batted 3-for-3 with one RBI and one run.
Gabriela Delatorre batted 1-for-3 with one home run, two RBIs and one run.
Victoria Lloyd batted 1-for-3 with one RBI and one run.
Soriah Corona batted 1-for-3 with one triple and one run.
Payton McConnell batted 1-for-2 with one double and one RBI.
Micaela Martinez batted 1-for-3 with one run.
“We were able to compete at the plate,” Bates said. “We had great situational hitting.”
Delatorres’s two-run homer extended Central Valley’s lead to 6-3.
“That was a clutch hit,” Bates said. “That gave up some breathing room.”
The Hawks notched their third straight victory.
Central Valley has outscored its first five opponents, 64-29.
The Hawks totaled a combined 47 runs in wins against Hilmar (15-14), Downey (12-0) and McNair (20-0).
“I think the girls are more confident in their abilities this year,” Bates said.
“We’ve had some compliments from umpires,” he added.
Host Ceres High improved to 3-0 overall and 1-0 in the Western Athletic Conference following its 5-2 triumph against Lathrop on Thursday.
“I’m happy,” Bulldogs’ head coach Mike Corsaut said. “It gets us going in the right direction.”
Bulldog starting pitcher Kylie Bond gave one earned run and four hits with three strikeouts and two walks in four innings.
Ceres High’s Alizae Cole picked up the save in relief.
She had five strikeouts and three walks in three innings.
Cole yielded no runs or hits.
“They did a great job,” Corsaut said while praising the performances of his two pitchers.
Ceres High collected eight hits on offense.
Cole batted 1-for-3 with one double and one RBI.
Ava Montesdeoca batted 2-for-4 with one double and three runs.
Bella Bravo batted 1-for-3 with one RBI and one run.
Nani Sagapolu batted 1-for-3 with one RBI and one run.
Makenna Azevedo batted 1-for-3 with one RBI.
Sehren Martinez batted 1-for-3 with one RBI.
Tatum George batted 1-for-2.
“We should have scored more,” Corsaut said. “We left a lot of runners on base. But we did what we needed to do to win. We’ll continue to work on getting better.”
Ceres High’s and Central Valley’s baseball teams played a combined five games this past week.
The Hawks dropped to 3-5 overall and 0-2 in the Central California Conference standings after losing 2-0 at Golden Valley on Saturday.
“We just didn’t execute the little things,” head coach Brad Bussard said. “We just got to get better at that stuff.”
“We’re trending in the right direction,” he added. “Once this team gets going, we’ll be tough to beat. There’s a ton of talent on our team.”
Central Valley pitched Diego Delahoya tallied nine strikeouts and three walks in six innings.
He gave up just one earned run and three hits.
“Diego gave us every opportunity to win the game,” Bussard said. “He did everything we asked him to do. We just didn’t support him with runs.”
Ryan Estermann singled twice.
Fernando Dominguez and Miguel Espinoza both singled.
Central Valley opened CCC play with a 6-2 loss to Golden Valley on Thursday in Ceres.
“They jumped on us early and we didn’t respond very well,” Bussard said.
Estermann, Central Valley’s starting pitcher, surrendered five earned runs, scattered seven hits, struck out one and walked three in four innings.
He batted 2-for-4 from the plate with one double, one RBI and one run.
Josiah Sandoval batted 2-for-3 with one run.
Espinoza batted 1-for-4.
Juan Alonzo and Chris Garcia both batted 1-for-3.
Central Valley defeated visiting Hilmar 4-2 in non-league play on Friday.
“We did not play our best baseball,” Bussard said. “We’re just not doing the little things right.”
Hawk pitcher Gage Mastropierro gave up one earned run and three hits with six strikeouts and three walks in four innings.
“He did a great job of competing and throwing strikes,” Bussard said.
Espinoza batted 2-for-3 with one run.
Sandoval batted 1-for-2 with one double and one run.
Chris Garcia batted 2-for-3 with one double.
Estermann batted 1-for-2 with one run.
Jake Olson scored one run.
Ceres High moved to 1-6 overall and 1-1 in the Western Athletic Conference after winning one of two games versus Lathrop.
The Bulldogs snapped a six-game losing streak with a 13-0 victory against the visiting Spartans on Friday at Art McRae Field.
“It’s what we needed,” head coach Raul Godinez said. “It shows we can be a good hitting team.”
Joshua Prestridge batted 2-for-3 from the plate with one homer run, one single and three RBIs.
Jorge Gonzalez batted 2-for-3 with one double.
Ceres High scored all 13 of its runs in the bottom of the fourth inning.
Prestridge belted a two-run homer.
“Our bats came alive,” Godinez said.
Bulldog pitcher Landyn Hudson tossed a five-inning shutout versus the Spartans.
He allowed just one hit with seven strikeouts.
“Landyn did really well,” Godinez said. “He was hitting his spots. He was locked in.”
Ceres High lost the second game of the doubleheader, 4-2, to Lathrop on March 17.
“The energy wasn’t there,” Godinez said. “We went back to our bad habits. We weren’t aggressive at the plate. We weren’t having fun.”
“By the time our bats got going, it was too late,” he added. “It’s hard to win games when you score two runs.”
Gonzalez started at pitcher.
He gave up two runs with six strikeouts in five innings.
Vincent Castrejon batted 2-for-3 from the plate with one double.