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April 12, 2011 > Chapa shakes off rocky start to handle Washington

Chapa shakes off rocky start to handle Washington

By Nick Zambrano
Photo by Mike Heightchew

Things didn't start off the right way against Washington for Newark Memorial ace Marissa Chapa. After watching teammate Jenai Rojo cap off a three-run first inning with a triple, she took to the mound with a comfy 3-0 lead. What she didn't expect was the resiliency of the Lady Husky lineup.

After allowing Mackenzie Bush to reach on an infield single, Chapa surrendered a triple to Washington slugger Katie Hoffman, scoring Bush with ease. Feeling like they had Chapa on the ropes, the Lady Huskies went for the haymaker with gusto.

Mary Morris dropped a shot into left field out of the reach of Katie Burdick. Gibson scored on the hit and narrowed the scoring gap. In spite of that, Morris was caught being greedy by trying to take third and the inning was over.

"Well, they are a good team and they came out balls-out swinging," Chapa said of her rocky first inning.

But like any great pitcher, Chapa took the experience of the first inning and made the proper adjustments and held Washington to that pair of runs and sealed a 5-2 win.

"I just had to make my own adjustments and make adjustments to their hitting styles. I did it early enough to get it in the end," continued Chapa.

Following up the first inning, the junior really settled down. After giving up the two runs and being hit by a pitch, she recorded eight of her nine strikeouts and gave up just another two hits. From the second inning through the fifth, she retired 14 of the 16 hitters she faced.

With the scored still 3-2 in the fifth, shortstop Erica Contreras led off with a triple that gave Washington left fielder Chessie Santeramo trouble picking up. Now with Contreras in scoring position, it was up to Burdick to deliver her home. In what looked like a sure out, Burdick tapped a come-backer to the pitcher Gibson, but the pitcher sailed the throw over first baseman Allison Hurley's head. Contreras scored on the error while Burdick was awarded second base.

After a bunt single from Maria Jimenez put Burdick at third, the Lady Cougars opted to play some small ball. With one out, Laurisa Hernandez dropped a sacrifice bunt allowing Burdick to bring the game to the final score.

"We have a lot of confidence in each other and I knew that in the end they'd have my back," Chapa said about her run support.

The Lady Cougars are now 11-1 overall but more importantly now 3-0 in Mission Valley Athletic League play. They'll play Irvington on April 12 and they come right back around and play James Logan the next day in what very well could be a preview of this year's MVAL title game. On the other end of the diamond, Washington falls to 7-7, 1-3 and will face Mission San Jose in their next game on April 12.

The Logan Lady Colts kept their MVAL winning streak in good standing after this thumping of the Lady Titans on April 7. Kennedy broke the game open with a two-run first inning, but it was Logan who responded quickly with a four-run third inning of their own to make the score 4-2. However, the Lady Titans scraped another to run together off Logan starter Kimberly Goulart in their half of the third to make it 4-3.

Goulart finished off the third before she handed the ball off to Raeann Garza for the hold. Goulart collected her first win of the season all while going three innings, allowing only two hits, two walks and three earned runs.

With Garza on the mound, Logan continued to pile on the insurance runs. After tagging on a solo run in the fourth, the Lady Colts combined for 11 runs in the final three innings. Seven of those runs came on their final three outs.

It was the usual suspects packing the scorebook for Logan's ladies of the diamond. Junior shortstop Jasmine Reed was in typical form, despite striking out twice. Reed hit her first home run on the season while going 2-5 with a double, four RBIs and two runs scored. Fellow infielder Alexis Martinez was a perfect 3-3 and fell a home run short of the cycle. The junior finished with three RBIs and three runs scored.

The Lady Colts will play back-to-back games starting on April 12 at American before turning around and playing heated rival Newark Memorial the next day. As for the Lady Titans, they'll have time to lick their wounds before playing another tough opponent in Newark Memorial on April 19.

The American Lady Eagles came into their contest with Irvington feeling pretty good about themselves. After losing two straight - including their MVAL opener against Newark Memorial - American has rebounded to win consecutive games for only the second time this year. Sadly, Irvington had different plans for the Lady Eagles.

Going into the seventh inning, the score favored Irvington, 3-2. With only three outs left to their name, American sparked a comeback and tagged Lady Vikings' pitcher Kendra Campbell for three runs. A third straight win looked certain. But what goes around, comes around. Irvington retorted with three runs of their own to secure the walk-off victory and boost their record to 7-7 and 2-1.

Campbell went the complete seven innings for the win. She got lineup support from battery mate Shannon Rodriguez, in the form of her 3-4 line with two RBIs. Sophomore Ashley Martorella went 2-4 at the plate with an RBI and a run scored; Morgan Gustas helped out, going 1-3 with an RBI.

The Lady Eagles are now 6-5 and 1-2 for the season. They face a steep uphill battle in the upcoming week with games scheduled against James Logan on April 12 and Newark Memorial on April 21.

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