Desert Oasis coach Jordan Connell said last week he wanted his softball team to be in the conversation with teams like Centennial among the city’s elite.
Holly Severance spun a four-hit shutout, and Meaghan McInerney had a double and three RBIs as the Diamondbacks put a 9-0 home drubbing on the Bulldogs in the first round of the Sunset Region tournament on Tuesday.
It was the first time in four all-time meetings Desert Oasis beat Centennial in a playoff game.
“Today was a special day because we put it all together,” Connell said. “I think today is a perfect example of a team just putting everything together at the end. They did a great job.”
Severance entered the game with the distinction of being the only Desert Oasis pitcher to ever beat Centennial, doing so last year. Other Diamondbacks are a combined 0-8 all-time, but Severance worked her magic again Tuesday. She allowed just five baserunners, and did not allow an extra-base hit.
Severance held Centennial’s top four hitters in the lineup to a measly 1-for-11.
“It takes a team effort,” Severance said. “I want to give props to my teammates. We hit good, our defense was solid. We just played our all.”
The Diamondbacks (29-5) wasted no time getting Severance run support. With two on and one out in the first inning, McInerney drilled a double down the line to put Desert Oasis up 2-0. Izriah Hodson had a two-out double in the second, and Makayla Rickard’s two-out double in the third led to two more runs.
“It’s important to jump out and get that lead, but at the same time we want to have consistency through every inning,” Connell said. “I’d rather score in every inning than score nine or 10 in one inning.”
Elsy Guzman was 1-for-2 with a pair of walks and three runs for the Diamondbacks.
Makenzie Ball was 1-for-2 and was hit by a pitch. She was the only player to reach base twice for the Bulldogs (23-13).
Desert Oasis will play at top-ranked Palo Verde (31-5) at 4 p.m. Wednesday. Centennial will host Bishop Gorman (12-21) at the same time.
Sierra Vista 7, Arbor View 4 — At Sierra Vista, the Mountain Lions rallied for four runs in the bottom of the fifth to top the Aggies.
Jessica Schneider’s RBI triple tied the game at 4-4, and Kalei Watkings gave Sierra Vista (24-4) the lead with an RBI double.
Rosalia Nakamura added an RBI triple, and Jazmyn Martinez had an RBI single to close out Sierra Vista’s scoring.
Schneider was 2-for-4 with two runs and two RBIs to lead the Mountain Lions. Watkins went the distance, allowing three earned runs and striking out eight, to get the win.
Taylor Thomas was 4-for-4 with two RBIs for Arbor View (14-4-1).
Sierra Vista will host Shadow Ridge (24-7) at 4 p.m. Wednesday. Arbor View will visit Durango (23-10) at 4 p.m. Wednesday.
Shadow Ridge 12, Durango 1 — At Shadow Ridge, Samantha Milanovich hit a walk-off three run single to give the Mustangs a six-inning win over the Trailblazers.
Winning pitcher Mia Voges had 12 strikeouts and was 3-for-3 with a double, triple and three RBIs. Raelyn Kendall was 3-for-3 with a double and three RBIs, and Alyssa Stanley was 2-for-3 with a double and an RBI for Shadow Ridge.
Kaitlyn Fazendin drove in Durango’s only run with a triple.
Palo Verde 15, Bishop Gorman 0 — At Palo Verde, Grace Chavez hit a three-run homer in the bottom of the third to give the Panthers the win in three innings over the Gaels.
Cara Beatty went 3-for-3 with four RBIs and three runs scored, and Ally Snelling was 2-for-2 with an RBI and three runs for the Panthers. Makena Martin had two RBIs and Camden Zahn supplied two hits and three runs for the Panthers.
Darian Pancirov hit a double for Gorman.