To say the Dorados’ bats were hot would be an understatement. The current D-2 state softball titleholder, Canyon Del Oro looked playoff ready as the team knocked in 23 runs en route to a 23-11 victory over the Mountain View Mountain Lions last Thursday.
The visiting Dorados got started with a four-run first inning with RBIs from Dominique Gonzales, Makenzie Sullivan, and two from Heather Knight on a double to center field.
The Mountain Lions couldn’t get on the scoreboard in the bottom of the first, despite earning four hits.
CDO cooled down in the second, earning just one run from Carli Campbell before Mountain View cut the inning short with a double play.
But when Mountain View failed to capitalize on the offensive end, the Dorados made them pay in the top of the third inning, scoring 11 runs to bring the game to 16-0.
The inning was highlighted with two RBIs from Knight and two from Jordyn Binnion, who doubled with bases loaded.
Knight finished the game five for six with two runs, two doubles, and 6 RBIs.
“We’ve been getting a lot of offensive practice,” said CDO coach Stephanie Nicholson. “We were just trying to get the girls to receive pitches more, and we went in ready for whatever they had, and ended up hitting pretty hard.”
Despite the substantial deficit, the Mountain Lions’ showed resiliency by outscoring the Dorados 11-7 over the next five innings.
“I’m very proud of them in that aspect,” said head coach Jill Malina. “We have really good hitters, it’s just that they need that confidence. I told them it was now or never, you’re going to get run-ruled, and we never want to get run-ruled.”
Trailing 20-3 in the bottom of the fourth, the message resonated, and the Mountain Lions managed an eight-run fifth inning, led by Justyne Coffey, who tripled to deep center to send in Ashley Rivera, and then earned two more RBIs late in the inning after her near-homer advanced Ariana Teyechea and Rivera home.
Both teams were scoreless in the sixth inning. The Dorados would earn three more runs in the seventh after a Mountain View error on an overthrown ball gave the Dorados two unearned runs. Knight collected her final RBI on a pop fly to give Samantha Nettling the game’s final run.
Nicholson said the team’s continued success this year will rely on continuing to find the best players for positions vacated by last year’s graduating seniors.
“It has a lot to do with finding where players are going to play well defensively,” she said. “The outfield is up for grabs. Last year we had all seniors out there, and now a lot of freshman are filling those spots and getting a lot of playing time.”
The Dorados improve to 11-1 on the season, while the Mountain Lions now sit at 9-4.