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TWolves win another title
The Sierra High varsity softball team poses with the section championship banner. - photo by HIME ROMERO

STOCKTON – Sierra has gotten the best of Kimball during its three years of existence.

On Saturday, the T’Wolves defeated their Valley Oak League rival this season for a fourth straight time, but this was for the Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV championship at the Arnaiz Softball Complex, 4-0.

Sierra junior hurler Allie Walljasper tossed nine strikeouts and freshman Devi Coglio had a two-RBI triple that crowned the T’Wolves section champion for a second time in three years.

“(Walljasper) has been a great pitcher since her freshman year, and she’s gotten us nine out of 10 times,” Kimball head coach Joseph Hernandez said. “In our three years of existence, we only have 21 losses. She definitely has a lot of talent.

“Hats off to (Sierra). They came and they played hard. They hit the ball and they pitched well.”

Sierra (12-2 Valley Oak League, 25-2 overall) pounded out seven hits and scored its first three runs all in the third frame. With two outs, shortstop Gianna Lenoci, who made the final out defensively, got things started by drawing a base on balls.

Senior lead-off hitter Iyana Hughes followed that up with a double that moved Lenoci over to third.

That’s when Coglio stepped up with a clutch two-RBI triple that gave Sierra a 2-0 advantage.

“I just really wanted to move the runners over,” Coglio said. “I kind of been in a slump, so I wanted to prove myself. We had two outs and that started the rally even more. I got that hit and then everyone else started hitting more and it pumped everyone up.”

Walljasper was next up to bat and she brought Coglio across the plate with an RBI single to make it 3-0. Senior second baseman Sommer Wilson followed that with a single but was left stranded.

“It came down to that third inning,” Sierra head coach Nick Olmo said. “That was a three-run inning with two outs. The girls were hitting the ball, they saw it well and they put the ball in play all game.”

Kimball (23-7) finished with three hits against Walljasper, who went through the Kimball line-up three complete times. The Jaguars got the bases loaded in the first inning, but were unable to bring any runs across the plate.

Kimball was not able to get any more than one runner on base for the rest of the contest.

“Everyone said we were the team to beat,” said Hughes, who made a key defensive play during the first inning to help Sierra escape unscathed. “All we had to do was go out there and keep doing what we were doing. We lost two in the (VOL), but that didn’t stop us at all. We were the team to beat.”

In the bottom of the sixth inning, Sierra put the stamp on it. Wilson got on base via a throwing error by Kimball’s third baseman. Junior Lexus Barnes sacrificed Wilson over to second, which was followed by another two-out RBI by senior Katelynn Perkins that brought Wilson across the plate to make up the game’s final score.

“Great season,” Olmo concluded. “We tried to stay focused on the immediate job, team by team as we went along. Especially after those tough losses to (East Union) and Oakdale, we had to turn it around and get the job done. They wanted to come out and prove those games were flukes. They were a great team and they deserved everything they won.”

To contact John-Joel Griffiths, e-mail