Manteca led off the bottom of the first Thursday with three infield singles that led to two runs, but visiting Oakdale proved to be too much as the Mustangs defeated Manteca 13-3 via the mercy rule in Valley Oak League softball action.
“We were not linking all of our hits together,” Buffaloes assistant coach Marissa Navarro said. “And we have seen power like that all season, but we were not making the plays that needed to be made.”
Oakdale (6-1 VOL, 12-1 overall) had no problem linking hits together. The Fresno State-bound Hackbarth sisters – Kindra and Maddi – led the game off with a pair of doubles sandwiched around pitcher Grace Green reaching on an error. The Mustangs added three RBI singles in the frame to take a 5-0 lead they would not relinquish.
Melissa Hansen, Haighley Kissee (2 for 3, RBI) and Tawny Deerinck got consecutive infield singles in the first inning for Manteca (7-4, 13-7). Morgan Miramontes got a grounder between third and short to plate Hansen and Kissee came in on a double play.
Kissee singled in Melanie Ramos in the fifth for the other Buffaloes’ other run.
Oakdale’s quick start may have been due in part to Mustangs coach Larry Loger laying things out for the team in Wednesday’s practice.
“We had a spirited coach’s practice yesterday,” Loger said. “We had a talk with our team and I think we got their attention. This is a very good pitcher here (Kissee) and they have some hitters so we had to change things because we weren’t quite focused.
“They came out very business-like and I was very proud. We are good when we do that and not so good when we don’t.”
Kindra Hackbarth finished 3 for 4 with a home run, two doubles and three runs. Maddi Hackbarth was 2 for 3 with a double and an RBI and teammate Haley Fuller was 2 for 3 with a home run and three RBI, her fourth home run in five games.
Oakdale’s trails East Union by a game and leads Sierra by two and will face both teams in the final four games, traveling to Sierra on Thursday and hosting East Union on Tuesday, May 10.
“We don’t even know who East Union is right now,” Loger said. “Sierra is good. If (pitcher) Lindsey (Walljasper) is on, she’s tough. She can pitch.
“We have seen her before. We are a good lineup but good pitching can knock down a good lineup. We are not thinking anything past Sierra.”
East Union 11, Kimball 0
One day after signing their letters of intent, Michelle Castro (William Penn) and Taylor Ward (Colorado State) picked up where they left off on the diamond Thursday at Northgate Softball Complex.
Castro crushed a leadoff home run and finished 2 for 2, while Ward smacked a pair of doubles in her 2-for-3 effort. Alejandra Rascon was also 2 for 2 and drove in four runs. Mikayla Bongi (three innings pitched) and Delaney Pamplin (two innings) combined for a no-hitter.