The Antelope Valley College Marauders had no idea what hit them this afternoon, as the Hornets mercied them 11 – 0 in a 90-minute game. Eight out of the nine Hornet batters reached base safely and combined for an overwhelming total of 10 hits while not having a single strikeout.
Antelope Valley’s offense managed to get two baserunners within 60 feet of home plate throughout the entire game.
The Hornet pitchers that combined for the shutout were freshman Haylee Enriquez, sophomore Jessica Lopez and freshman Nicole Gonzalez. Enriquez got her second win of the season, Lopez struck out three Marauder batters and Gonzalez, with some difficulty, managed to close out the second shortest game the Hornets have had all season.
Marauders’ freshman pitcher, Bailey Damian, walked four Hornet batters in the first inning and three of the four walked batters scored off slapstick shots through the infield.
Hornets sophomore second baseman, Sarah Rengifo, had an RBI single that dropped into center field scoring freshman shortstop, Danielle Ramirez from third base. Freshman catcher, Celeste Borza, was able to score from second base during the play on a catching error made by Marauders’ freshman catcher, Nayaley Delgado, who couldn’t handle the ball as Borza slid headfirst into the plate, resulting in the Hornets first taking the lead 2 – 0.
The first inning rampage continued as Enriquez slapped a two-RBI single down the left-field line scoring freshman left fielder, Miranda Rooney from third base and Rengifo from second base extending the Hornets lead to 4 – 0 at the end of the first inning.
Ramirez added to the lead in the bottom of the second inning when she nailed an RBI double into the right-center field gap allowing Hornets’ freshman right fielder, Madison Ferguson, to run home from second base putting the Hornets 5 – 0 over the Marauders.
Another run was scored in the bottom of the third inning off an RBI single to center field from the bat of sophomore Hornets’ center fielder, Clarissa Hernandez. Rooney scored her second run of the game from second base on the play increasing the Hornets’ impressive lead to 6 – 0.
The last five Hornet runs were scored in the bottom of the fourth inning from a combination of sacrifice plays and RBI hits. Ferguson, Borza and Rengifo all knocked in baserunners that reached base as the result of slapstick hits.
Despite the poor performance, the Marauders displayed in the field, Antelope Valley’s Head Coach Cindy Vargas wasn’t disappointed in her players.
“I just told them we played pretty good defense,” stated Vargas. “We can’t expect to win games if we don’t score runs. Our whole goal is just trying to get ready for the conference.”
Coach Vargas stated that her star pitcher, sophomore Briana Garrett, was injured and this loss to the Hornets was a way to see how her backup starting pitchers could handle a full load of consistent starts.
Hornets Head Coach Speedy Mendoza understandably was in good spirits after coaching her team’s second mercy.
“It feels like they’re adjusting to the hitting, making adjustments at the plate and seeing more pitches,” said Mendoza. “I’m most impressed with how many walks we have drawn during both mercies. The girls are seeing the ball very well.”
Rengifo, the heavy hitter of the game, drove in a total of four runs after going 2 – 3 with two hits and a ground out.
“Honestly, I feel amazing,” she exclaimed. “Just getting through the lineup and getting on base made me feel more confident after coming back from not playing a couple games.”
The mercy win from today helps the Hornets’ overall record making it 4 – 3. As of now, they’re 1 – 0 in the conference, but all of that could change Wednesday afternoon as the Cypress College Chargers roll into town at 2:30 p.m.
The Chargers, notably the Hornets’ fiercest conference rival, have an impressive 6 – 0 overall record and are 1 – 0 in the conference.
Whatever happens Wednesday afternoon at Fullerton College, one team will be 1 – 1 by game’s end and somebody will be 2 – 0.