Island sports: Alameda Blaze
USSSA Regional Battle, Hayward, May 23-25
USSSA Regional Battle, Hayward, May 23-25
The 12U Alameda Blaze kicked off the 2009 season with a bang, finishing in third place the USSSA Regional Battle in Hayward. They won five of the seven games played and just qualified to play for the championship.
Saturday, May 23
Alameda Blaze 8, Cupertino Inferno 4
The Alameda Blaze opened the tournament with a win, showing that they were excited to kick off the 2009 tournament season. After falling behind by two runs in the first inning, they came back with on a double by Samantha Williams that drove in two runs and a single by Isabella Deatherage that brought in one run. In the third inning the team executed a double play to keep the Inferno from rallying on a catch of a fly by Deatherage and a throw to Caroline Liu at first to catch a runner off the base. The Blaze increased their lead in the final inning on a single by Liu that drove in a run.
Alameda Blaze 7, West County Flames 5
The Blaze held on for a win against the Flames after a falling behind by three runs early and fighting to keep the Flames from getting further ahead. Samantha Williams led the defense from the mound, throwing three strikeouts and fielding two balls and getting runners out at first. The Blaze got on the board with a double by Kiara Proctor that drove in a run and later in the game with two singles by Dominique Shaver and Rachel Reising.
San Lorenzo Impact 9, Alameda Blaze 8
The Blaze struggled to hold on to a win against the Impact in their third game of the day. The Blaze began the game on fire, pulling ahead by seven runs. They were led by Kelley Desmond, who hit a single to get on base, then Dominique Shaver, who hit a double that drove in a runs, and Isabella Deatherage, who hit a double that brought in two more. In the third inning the Impact rallied and the Blaze defense did its best to keep them from scoring, but they fell short and lost by one run.
Sunday, May 24
Alameda Blaze 12, Cupertino Inferno 0
The Blaze bounced back on Sunday morning against the Inferno and proved that they were ready to play, winning by 12 runs. The Blaze defense showed it could perform, taking down the Inferno three in a row for the first two innings on strong pitching by Shannon Regan and fielding by Dominique Shaver and Caroline Liu. On the offensive side, the Blaze recorded 12 hits in less than three innings.
Alameda Blaze 10, West County Flames 4
The Blaze faced the Flames for the second time and this time played tougher to win by a larger margin. The Blaze began the game with six hits, scoring seven of their 10 runs in the first inning. Rachel Reisling hit a double deep into the outfield to drive in two runs. Sasita Knaurer also recorded an RBI on a single to left field. Samantha Williams led the defense, pitching four strikeouts and fielding for an out at first base.
Alameda Blaze 7, Cupertino Inferno 4
The Blaze faced the Inferno for a chance to play in the semifinals and rose to the challenge, winning for the second time against them. The Blaze started off strong, putting runners on base immediately. Isabella Deatherage drove one in to go ahead. The Inferno came back and led 3-1 going into the third inning. The Blaze came back on a couple of singles by Kelley Desmond and Jordan Cenidoza and then a big double by Dominique Shaver that brought them both in. Caroline Liu followed with a single that also drove in two runs. The Blaze needed their defense to secure the win and came through with a double play. Shannon Regan fielded a hit and threw out the runner at first. Caroline Liu reacted quickly, making the throw to Desmond to get the runner trying to steal home.
Semifinals – Monday, May 25
San Lorenzo Impact 6, Alameda Blaze 5
The Blaze faced the only team they had lost to in the tournament for the opportunity to play for the championship. It was a close game, with the score tied 5-5 after three innings. The Blaze played tough defense. Isabella Deatherage caught a runner stealing second for a needed out in the bottom of the third. Dominique Shaver followed, snagging a foul ball down the third base line for out #2, and Rachel Reisling made an awesome catch of a fly ball deep into left field for out #3. The Blaze were not able to get a rally going with their bats in the fourth inning and the Impact came back in the bottom of the fourth to win by one run. The Blaze took home the third place trophy.