Unbeaten no more: Vikings end SRJC, COS streaks

Ashlie Nakano spun a two-hit gem against Sequoias
Ashlie Nakano spun a two-hit gem against Sequoias

Friday's doubleheader at Viking Field matched one-loss West Valley with unbeaten Santa Rosa Jr. College and the College of the Sequoias, two of the six remaining 3C2A squads with perfect records. The day of high-level softball ended with a pair of WVC wins and only four unbeaten teams left in California.

The Vikings (9-1) topped SRJC (2-2) 3-2 in the opener and then blanked COS (5-1) 3-0 in late game. Pitching was the theme of the day for all three teams, but it was West Valley's arms that stood out.

Samantha Mader had the relief outing of the year so far in game one. She took over in the fifth for starter Miranda Torres, who shut out the Bear Cubs on just two hits in four innings. Mader got off to a rocky start, allowing two SRJC runs on an inning-opening walk, an infield error and a Mallory O'Keefe two-run double down the left field line. Mader was untouchable after that.

She ended the fifth with three strikeouts, collected two more in the sixth and another to open the seventh. Mader earned the win in the circle when she got SRJC's Gabriela Schenone to pop out to Alina Perez at second to end the game.

The Vikings made it 2-0 with a four-hit fourth inning. Xochitl Garcia and Brianna Chambers Lee led off with singles and came home when Andrea DeJesus ripped a double over a leaping Adriana Novak at second that rolled to the center field fence.

WVC answered SRJC's game-tying, two-run fifth with what proved to be the game winner in the home half of the frame. Jasmine Mixco started things off with a triple to left-center, her second three-bagger of the game and fifth of the season. She scampered home with the deciding run two batters later on a Larissa Higgins sacrifice fly to center.

Mixco anchored the seven-hit Viking offense with the two triples, while DeJesus logged the two-run double. Gabriella Diotalevi, Chambers Lee, Garcia and Keithleen Gonzalez all had singles.

West Valley starter Ashlie Nakano was consistent, efficient and in complete control of the Giants in game two. Proving pitching isn't just about strikeouts, Nakano gave up only a pair of singles to Skye Gomez and issued no walks – to go along with a solo strikeout. She and the Viking defense (which recorded 11 fly ball putouts) set COS down in order in the first, third, fourth and fifth and allowed just four Giant baserunners in seven innings.

WVC scored the game's only runs in the third. KG Gonzalez led off with single and would come home on a DeJesus single to make it 1-0. Kayla Gonzalez ripped a triple to the scoreboard in right-center that drove in DeJesus. Higgins singled to center, scoring Gonzalez for a 3-0 Viking lead that would hold to the end.

Daniella Simon finished 2-for-3 to lead the WVC offense.

After ten consecutive home games to open the season, West Valley hits the road Tuesday (2/13) for a 2:00pm game at Modesto Jr. College. WVC returns to Viking Field Friday (2/16) to take on Folsom Lake (3-4) at 10:00am and Merced (5-3) at 2:00pm.

Perennial powerhouse Sierra (2-4) comes to Saratoga Saturday (2/17). Game times are noon and 2:00pm.