SPRING JAMBOREE: Centennial snaps out of slumber

Centennial’s softball team won’t be going out of its way to remember its first four games in the Spring Jamboree at Majestic Park.

The Bulldogs, outscored 37-10 in their four pool-play games, took out their frustrations in the opening round of bracket play Friday.

Bailie Nelson, Heather Bowen and Alyssa Finger homered, and Katelynn Rauskin pitched a three-hitter as the Bulldogs pounded San Fernando (Calif.), 11-0 in five innings.

“It feels good to finally get one in the win column,” coach Mike Livreri said. “It was big for our confidence.”

Coming into the tournament, Centennial (15-8) hadn’t lost consecutive games all season. But the

Bulldogs were shut out in losses to San Benito (Calif.) and Edison (Calif.) on Thursday, were dominated by El Camino Real (Calif.) early Friday and looked lost in a 13-8 loss to Pleasant Grove (Calif.) in the pool-play finale.

None of that showed against San Fernando. The Bulldogs backed Rauskin with flawless defense, including a perfect throw from Finger in left field to cut down a runner at third base to end the fourth inning.

Rauskin struck out five and walked four. She didn’t allow a runner to reach third base.

“She pitched a nice game,” Livreri said. “When she’s consistent, she’s hitting the strike zone and getting balls put in play. When she’s on, she’s on.”

Centennial’s usually potent bats awoke from their tournament slumber, as well, with the Bulldogs swinging early in counts.

Nelson’s three-run homer to left-center field ignited a five-run second inning that gave Centennial a 6-0 lead.

Bowen belted a two-run homer down the line in left later in the inning, and Finger hit the first pitch of the third over the fence in center field. Centennial’s first 14 batters saw a total of 22 pitches, but gave the team a 7-0 lead.

“We were a little more aggressive at the plate,” Livreri said. “We jumped on them early. We were telling them that if the first pitch was good, we were going after it. We were attacking.”

The Bulldogs carried an 8-0 lead into the fifth and put the finishing touches on the game with consecutive two-out RBI doubles by Savannah Horvath, Bowen and Taylor Huntly.

Bowen finished 3-for-4 with two runs and four RBIs for Centennial, which faces Northwest League-rival Palo Verde in a winners’ bracket quarterfinal this morning.

El Camino Real (Calif.) 9, Centennial 2 — Dani Gilmore was 4-for-5 with a home run, a double and two RBIs as the Conquistadors defeated the Bulldogs.

Bowen and Mikayla Djordjevic each went 2-for-4 for Centennial.

Pleasant Grove (Utah) 13, Centennial 8 — Pleasant Grove sent 17 batters to the plate in the third inning, scoring 11 runs to take a 13-2 lead, and held on as the Bulldogs nearly brought the tying run to the plate in the seventh.

Bowen was 3-for-5 with a triple and an RBI, and Horvath went 2-for-4 with an RBI for Centennial, which got a home run from Finger.

Palo Verde 11, Bell (Calif.) 3 — Melissa Lacro went 4-for-5 with a pair of doubles, a run scored and two RBIs as the Panthers moved into the winners’ bracket quarterfinals with an easy win over the Chargers.

Breanna Beatty was 3-for-5 with four runs and three RBIs, and Melissa McCormick went 2-for-5 with a pair of doubles and two RBIs for Palo Verde, which scored nine runs in the final three innings. Cheryl Iddings was 2-for-3 with a run and an RBI for the Panthers.

McCormick struck out nine to get the win.

Palo Verde 18, Maranatha (Calif.) 6 — McCormick was 3-for-4 with a home run, a double and four RBIs, and the Panthers led the Minutemen the whole way after scoring five runs in the top of the first inning.

Iddings was 3-for-5 with a pair of doubles and an RBI, and Salina Gonzalez went 2-for-4 with a double and four RBIs for Palo Verde. Rachel Williams was 3-for-4 with a double and an RBI for the Panthers.

Palo Verde 16, Jordan (Calif.) 6 — McCormick went 3-for-4 with a double, four runs and two RBIs, and Lacro was 3-for-4 with a triple, two runs and two RBIs as the Panthers rolled to a six-inning win.

Williams was 2-for-5 with three RBIs, and Angel Council went 3-for-4 with two runs for Palo Verde.

Pahrump Valley 7, Bell (Calif.) 3 — Whitney Roderick tossed a four-hitter and struck out nine to help the Trojans top the Chargers.

Taylor Ball was 2-for-3 with a double and two RBIs, and Sara Williams went 2-for-4 with a run scored and an RBI for Pahrump. Casey Sierra went 2-for-3 with a double and a run for the Trojans.

El Camino Real (Calif.) 18, Pahrump Valley 0 — The Conquistadors pounded out 18 hits en route to a five-inning rout in bracket play.

Schurr (Calif.) 10, Cheyenne 2 — The Spartans used a four-run second inning and five-run fifth inning to defeat the Desert Shields.

Tiffany Smitley and Megan Ingram each went 1-for-3 with a run for Cheyenne.

Sylmar (Calif.) 13, Cheyenne 7 — The Spartans scored twice in the sixth and four times in the seventh to pull away from the Desert Shields.

Vanessa Sanders went 3-for-4 with a double, a run and four RBIs for Cheyenne. Bailey Benson was 2-for-2 with a double and a run, and Rachel Holly went 2-for-4 with a double, two runs and an RBI for the Desert Shields.

Marshall (Calif.) 1, Rancho 0 — The Rams’ Brandy Marlett tossed a one-hitter with nine strikeouts, but was victimized by an unearned run in the first inning as the Mighty Barristers eked out the win.

Edison (Calif.) 17, Rancho 0 — Jessica Plaza belted two home runs and a double as part of a 20-hit attack by the Chargers in a five-inning win over the Rams.

Amber Marlett’s single provided Rancho’s lone hit.

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