RATES       _______________________________ LM __________________________________

LMGSA 14u Take Ninth Place in Tournament, Heading to Colorado for Nationals

By Ryann Ippolito

From Santa Barbara all the way to Mexico and everywhere in between, softball teams around So Cal that qualified in their districts gathered to Lancaster this weekend for the ASA B State Tournament. Girls from age 8u all the way to age 18u came to compete for the State title and the chance to qualify to play in Western Losing twice would mean your season was over, while placing in at least 12th would be eligible for Nationals.

La Mirada 14u first had to play Imperial Beach on Friday. In the beginning of the game, each team scored 3, causing it took look like it was going to be close. In the second inning, La Mirada’s pitching struggled, resulting in multiple walks. LM tried to battle back, scoring a few runs, but it wasn’t enough. Imperial Beach took this game, final score being 13-6.
Saturday was a new day. This was an important day too. LM’s first opponent was Murrieta Valley. The lead went was in LM’s favor first. Jordan Ostrowski bombed a triple in the 5th inning, being one of the day’s best hits. Miranda Herrera and Alexis Ortega together pitched a shutout game, contributing to the score of 7-0, La Mirada.
Next game up was against Thousand Oaks. TO first took the lead with a few solid hits. Brianna Gomez-Ortega followed that up with a hard grounder to third base. The ball took a bad hop and hit the third baseman in the mouth. Five of her teeth fell out, ambulances were called, and the game was paused due to this unfortunate accident. As upsetting as this event was, the game had to go on. La Mirada fought back, scoring two runs from Savannah Hofman and Ortega. Thousand Oaks wasn’t quite finished yet either. The team’s hitting excelled, hitting every ball they received. The score was now 5-2 in the last inning, looking like the end for La Mirada. But they battled back. With hits from Gomez-Ortega, Ryann Ippolito, Ostrowski, and Hofman, LM scored 3 runs, exactly enough to tie up the game. Time had expired, so International Tiebreaker was to happen.
TO scored two runs.  LM’s  Gwenda Garcia laid down a sacrifice bunt to move runner Alondra Reyes to third base, scoring position. Garcia made it to second base while no one was covering, while Reyes ran home to tie the game up. Pinch hitter Madelyn Falcetti sacrificed Gwenda to third, who also noticed no one covering second, so she also made it there as well. With the winning run on third base, Ortega laid down yet another bunt, where Garcia got into a nail-biting, edge of seat pickle, where she eventually came home to score the game winning run, final score: 7-6.
Only one more win was needed to be eligible for Nationals, and this game was against Corona. Corona took the lead, scoring 5 runs. La Mirada knew this was do or die right here; they had to win. Ostrowski, known power hitter, started things up with yet another triple. Garcia, Victoria Calcanas, and Ebonie Coleman both stepped up too, contributing to the 4 runs LM scored to catch up. Finally, it was 5-4, Corona in the lead, runners Mary Ramirez and Madelyn Falcetti on third and second, known as scoring position. Ryann Ippolito comes up to bat, steps up, and hits a grounder up the middle, bringing 2 runs home, ending the game, final score being 6-5, La Mirada.
La Mirada ended up placing 9th in State Championships, meeting the criteria to go to Nationals in Fort Collins, Colorado. The girls have until the end of July to perfect their game, and most importantly, make their city proud. As this trip to Colorado brings pride to our city, it also brings a significant cost to our players and their families. Any sponsors from any local businesses or donations would be greatly appreciated. Please contact Tammy Ostrowski at (562)-397-7995.

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