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Youth-laden Hawks make strides in conference play
The Central Valley High School varsity softball teams roster features a wealth of young talent, including freshman third baseman Alyssa Maeyama (pictured). - photo by DALE BUTLER/The Courier

Central Valley High School's varsity softball team closed the competitive gap in defeat.

The Hawks put up a fight in losing 10-9 to Livingston and 6-0 to Patterson in recent weeks.

Central Valley lost by blowout to both teams during the first half of the Western Athletic Conference season.

"It's been challenging," Hawks head coach Kristen Ghimenti said. "We're young. Five years ago, I had a similar team. By year three, they posted the best record CV has ever seen."

Livingston edged Central Valley by one run on April 14 in Ceres.

The Wolves improved to 1-7 in the WAC.

"We had better hitting and made less defensive mistakes," Ghimenti said. "It's nice to see them be competitive throughout an entire game. We had a chance to win. The girls were disappointed. That shows they care."

Patterson shut out visiting Central Valley 6-0 on Thursday.

The last-place Hawks dropped to 0-7 in the league standings.

Patterson improved to 3-5.

The Hawks have been outscored 100-24 in conference play.

Central Valley will play at Los Banos tomorrow at 4 p.m.

"This is one of my closest teams I've had in my five years here," Ghimenti said. "They don't yell at each other. I'm not having any attitude issues. They all get along. Right now, the emphasis is learning to do the little things right. At one point, my girls couldn't even get a bunt down. They always play hard."