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Hawk standouts Pelayo, Bonales receive all-league accolades
Frosh catcher a second-team pick
Central Valley freshman catcher Nayeli Pelayo was selected to the Western Athletic Conference Second Team. - photo by DALE BUTLER/The Courier

Freshman Nayeli Pelayo and sophomore Gabriela Bonales both had standout individual seasons while playing for Central Valley High School's varsity softball team this year.

Pelayo and Bonales both earned recognition during the Western Athlete Conference year-end coaches' meeting.

"The voting process was fair," Hawks head coach Kristen Ghimenti said. "They deserved to be honored. They're young and talented."

Pelayo, Central Valley's freshman cleanup hitter and catcher, was selected to the WAC Second Team.

Nayeli batted .324 with one homer, seven RBIs, one run and one stolen base.

"I'm very proud of her," Ghimenti said. "The other coaches recognized her talents. She led our team in batting average. We'll see how she continues to develop."

Pelayo was promoted to varsity because of her hitting, throwing ability and knowledge of the game.

"As soon as she came out there, there was no question she was going to be moved up," Ghimenti said. "She understands the game. She can hit. She has a strong arm. At the beginning of the season, she was quiet. She was with a whole new group of girls. She became more vocal as the year progressed. She stepped up as expected. She'll be a player to watch in the coming years as long as she continues to work hard."

Bonales, Central Valley's sophomore No. 3 hitter and leftfielder, earned honorable-mention accolades.

Gabriela batted .278 with one homer, one triple, two doubles, four RBIs and six runs.

"She was an important player on the team," Ghimenti said. "She's a good leader. She's also a nice kid. Her batting got her recognition this year. She was consistent."

The Hawks posted an 0-12 record on their way to a last-place finish in the WAC standings.