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Bonita Vista, Mater Dei Catholic highlight draw in CIF softball playoffs Phillip Brents | Tue, May 22 2012 03:47 PM

This year’s San Diego Section softball playoffs are sprinkled with a healthy dose of Metro Conference teams, including a pair that have been earmarked for championship round appearances.

Overall, five South County teams gained admittance to this week’s divisional playoffs. The heavy hitters include the Bonita Vista Barons, top-seeded in Division II, and the two-time defending Division IV champion Mater Dei Catholic Crusaders, seeded second in the division this year.

The Otay Ranch Mustangs and Eastlake Titans both qualified to participate in the Division I playoffs while the South Bay League champion Mar Vista Mariners qualified in Division III.

Play-in games took place Wednesday, with winners joining the top four seeded teams in each division in first round play on Friday to complete an eight-team double-elimination field. 

Bonita Vista (21-3-1) will host ninth-seeded Point Loma (20-7) on Friday at 3:30 p.m.

Mater Dei Catholic (18-8) will host 10th-seeded Holtville, also on Friday.

Friday’s first-round winners advance to second round play on Saturday at 1 p.m., following challenger bracket games at 10 a.m.

Third round games are scheduled May 22, followed by fourth round games on May 24. The division championships are scheduled May 26 at UC San Diego.

Otay Ranch finished 7-3 in league play, 20-9 overall, to earn the No. 5 seed in Division I. The Mustangs hosted 12th-seeded Rancho Buena Vista (13-10) in Wednesday’s play-in round, defeating the Longhorns (13-11) by a 5-1 score to advance Friday’s opening round of double-elimination play.

Otay Ranch will play at fourth-seeded Carlsbad (16-10).

Eastlake finished 5-5 in league play, 9-14 overall, to receive the No. 10 seed in the Division I field. The Titans travelled to play seventh-seeded Mission Hills, dropping a tight 4-3 decision to the Grizzlies (14-10) to end its season.

Mission Hills advances to play No. 2 seed Mira Mesa (25-5).

Mar Vista, which finished 13-14-1 overall, earned a home game in Wednesday’s opening round after finishing 11-1 in South Bay League play. The 12th-seeded Mariners hosted fifth-seeded Cathedral Catholic (17-9), with the Dons (18-9) posting a 3-0 victory to advance against fourth-seeded University City (14-10).

Batter up
The top four finishers in the Mesa League qualified for the playoffs, led by the league champion Barons.

Bonita Vista concluded a perfect 10-0 Mesa League season by sweeping the Eastlake Titans by identical 10-0 scores in games played May 8 and 10. In doing so, the Barons extended their consecutive winning streak to 16 games.

Bonita Vista’s three losses have come against Torrey Pines, Poway and West Hills. The tie came against Mira Mesa.

None of those teams are competing in this year’s Division II playoff bracket. Torrey Pines, Mira Mesa and Poway are seeded in that order in the Division I bracket while West Hills has dropped down to the Division III enrollment level, earning the No. 2 seed.

West Hills upset the Barons in last year’s Division II championship game.

Hitting leaders entering the playoffs for Bonita Vista include Hanna Flippen (.482), Anissa Pinedo (.442), Ashley Quidolet (.405), Tianah Hathaway (.400), Celinna Cosio (.373), Chelsy Ramirez (.365) and Caroyln Wright (.349).

Jen Hartman has spun another fabulous season in the pitching circle with a 15-1 record, 12 complete games, three shutouts, two saves, 106 strikeouts in 101 innings and a 1.32 earned-run average.

Alex Vargas is 6-2 with three complete games, one save and a 1.67 ERA.

Mater Dei Catholic finished 4-6 in league play, 18-8 overall.

The Crusaders are led by top hitters Kimberly Tamayo (.543), Maritza Lopez-Portillo (.494), Skania Lemus (.489) and Taylor Cruse (.321).

Lopez-Portillo has clubbed 10 home runs, five triples and nine doubles this season as the club’s top power hitter with 49 RBI. She is also 6-1 in the pitching circle with a 2.07 ERA.

Cruse ranks second on the team with 32 RBI, followed by Tamayo with 29 RBI and Lemus with 22 RBI.

Alexis Morales has seen the most action this season in the pitching circle with a 12-7 record and 3.71 ERA.

By the numbers: South Bay League

Mar Vista claimed the league title by a one-game margin over league newcomer Chula Vista. The Mariners finished 11-1 in league play, followed by Chula Vista (10-2, 15-5), Montgomery (9-3, 15-7), Sweetwater (4-8, 6-9), Southwest (4-8, 5-9), Castle Park (3-8, 4-11) and San Ysidro (0-11, 0-14).

Ashley Harbin led Mar Vista with a .544 hitting average while Tori Santa Lucia drove in a team-leading 25 runs, followed by teammate Giselle Daniels with 23 RBI.

Mallory Rosas posted a team leading eight victories in the pitching circle, followed by Harbin with three wins and one save.

Karren Lopez hit .400 in 17 games for Montgomery while Linda Cerda batted .365 in the same number of contests.

By the numbers: Mesa League
Sashel Palacios led Otay Ranch with a .544 hitting average and 30 RBI. Carlee Wood hit .378 with 15 RBI. Erika Rodriguez hit .366 with 20 RBI while Jonee Rutledge hit .312 with 23 RBI and four home runs. Sonia Mazon hit .264 with 21 RBI and three homers.

Adri Puentes finished regular season play 12-4 in the pitching circle with a 1.69 ERA.

Eastlake’s regular season hitting leaders included Dylan Christensen (.526 with 10 doubles, two home runs and 12 RBI), Jenelle Ladrido (.364), Hadyn Christensen (.361 with three home runs and 15 RBI), Lauren Gomez (.339) and Kylie Diaz (.338).

Hilltop finished 4-6 in Mesa League play, 9-18 overall, followed by Olympian at 0-10 in league play, 9-14 overall.

Hilltop’s leaders included Tiffany Salcedo (.441 with four home runs and 24 RBI), Colleen Rasmussen (.303 with 14 RBI), Ariel Bochniak (.288 with 13 RBI), Victoria Lopez (.267 with 10 RBI) and Victoria Finau (.256 and 13 RBI).

Erika Forget led Olympian with a .500 hitting average, 30 RBI and seven home runs. Janessa Faafiti followed with a .464 hitting average and 12 RBI. Rachel Navarro ranked third on the Eagles with 11 RBI.


Play-in Round
Division I

Otay Ranch 5, Rancho Buena Vista 1
Mission Hills 4, Eastlake 3
Division III
Cathedral Catholic 3, Mar Vista 0

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