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July 30, 2021

Softball | Salinas Valley teams strive for spot in playoffs

SALINAS VALLEY — Three of the four South Monterey County high schools are participating in this week’s play-in tournament, hoping to earn a spot in the Central Coast Section playoffs.

In games Wednesday, Soledad is playing at noon against host Monterey; Gonzales is playing in Pebble Beach with the Robert Louis Stevenson Pirates at 4 p.m.; and King City is on the road against Carmel.

King City Mustangs were 2-0 for the week, as they beat local rival Gonzales Spartans, 10-2, and finished the week with a 19-5 victory at Greenfield.

Lisa Villanueva led King City with three hits against Gonzales, including two doubles and three runs batted in. Malaya Carrillo was the winning pitcher and added hits with one double and two RBIs. Skyla Reyes had multiple hits with a double, Alec Tejeda hit a double and Kayla Tankersley drove in a pair of runs.

The May 26 game was the Senior Night for the Lady Spartans, which honored their own seniors along with the Lady Mustang seniors before the contest.

Honored before last Wednesday’s game between the King City and Gonzales softball teams were senior players (from left) Leah Salas (Gonzales); Sofia Prieto (Gonzales); Breanna Owens (King City); Jesika Rodriguez (Gonzales); Alejandra Tejeda (King City); and Andrea Garcia (Gonzales). (Michael Ramirez/Staff)

At Greenfield, Alec Tejeda had three hits with two doubles and a single, and Breanna Owens had two hits and an inside-the-park homerun for Greenfield. Tori Hamilton contributed to the win with two hits, and winning pitcher Malaya Carrillo had five strikeouts and hit an inside-the-park homerun.

“They don’t have an outfield fence at Greenfield and the homeruns came as the ball sailed over the outfielders’ heads and our batters kept running,” said King City Coach Artie Carrillo. “We helped ourselves by scoring six runs in the first and four runs in the fourth inning. Our play-in game today at Carmel should be a close one because we match up well with each other. We lost to Carmel at their place by a 14-13 score and we beat them in King City, 11-7.”

At Soledad last Thursday, Gonzales edged the Soledad Aztecs, 11-0. Alena Fierro went 3 x 4 with two runs scored, and Josselyn Hernandez was 3 x 5. Alex Guerrero went 2 x 3 with a homerun and struck out nine for the pitching win.

Gonzales finished the regular season at 8-6 overall.

Greenfield Bruins completed the season with a 7-4 win against Soledad. Denise Solis led the Lady Bruins with five hits, while Lizbeth Alcantar and Linda Ornelas had three hits apiece. Mikayla Sanchez added three hits and finished the game with 14 strikeouts.

“We played good softball to end the season but won’t be in a play-in game,” said Greenfield head coach Adrian Trujillo. “They (Bruins) have come a long way and the future looks bright. We have a very young team.”

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