San Marino High School’s collective objective of winning a CIF softball championship came to an end last Thursday afternoon at Fountain Valley but not before the Titans threw a huge scare into the hostesses before falling, 5-2, in the CIF Division 5 quarterfinals.
San Marino ended the season with a 15-9 overall record after finishing third in the Rio Hondo League with a 6-6 mark.
Freshman Kayla Giddings went 2-for-3 and scored a run while senior Katy Bell ended the contest 1-for-3 and scored a run. Senior Tiffany Pletting went 1-for-3 with an RBI and sophomore Sophia Bilvado added a base hit, but it wasn’t enough.
SMHS senior pitcher Claire Streeter threw six solid innings, striking out 11 while scattering six hits.
But the contest may have turned on a controversial decision by the umpiring crew.
With the score tied 2-2 and Fountain Valley batting in the bottom of the sixth inning, Fountain Valley’s Samantha Estrada singled with one out, took second on a wild pitch and scored on pinch-hitter Andrea Maldonado’s RBI single. Marissa Sardinas then hit a high pop-up toward first base. The ball hit the ground in fair territory but was not touched by a San Marino defender. The ball spun off the dirt and into San Marino’s dugout. The plate umpire called it a foul ball, but was overruled by the two base umpires. Sardinas was sent to second base while Maldonado crossed the plate to add a fourth run. Kira Velasco smacked a single to bring home Sardinas.
Though clearly within his rights to complain, Edmonds resisted.
“That would be sour grapes,” said San Marino’s first-year coach. “Sometimes I get that call and sometimes it goes the other way. They just beat us. That day they were better than us; that’s just the way it is. Fountain Valley was well-coached and they have an excellent team.”
San Marino closes up shop for the season but not before several landmark performances. Bilvado set a new season mark for home runs with six and Giddings ran by season record for stolen bases, snagging 24. Senior Kate Brunner also is now just the second player in San Marino High School varsity softball history who has batted over .400 in four consecutive seasons. Streeter is just the third hurler to record over 100 strikeouts against Rio Hondo League opponents in a single season. All that is nice, but Edmonds isn’t quite yet over it.
“Our season ended earlier than I had hoped,” he said. “I still haven’t recovered. Especially on behalf of the seniors. They are a great group and invested a lot in this program.”
There is still a little softball action remaining. Edmonds has been asked to be a coach in the San Gabriel Valley Tribune high school all-star softball game and three of his players – Bilvado, Streeter and Elissa Beck – will also suit up for the game.
“That’s nice and I am personally very honored to be there, but I would much rather be moving on as a team,” Edmonds concluded.
San Marino 6, Santa Paula 0
Senior Claire Streeter allowed the visiting Cardinals just two hits while striking out 11 last Tuesday afternoon to win a CIF Division 5 second-round playoff game.
Senior Kate Brunner had two hits in three plate appearances and drove in a run for the Titans while senior catcher Macy Mooney went 1-for-3 with an RBI. Sophomore Sophia Bilvado cracked a home run and knocked in two teammates as San Marino never looked back.
Other hits were recorded by freshman Kayla Giddings, senior Katy Bell, senior Tiffany Pletting and Streeter, who helped her cause with two hits.