March 17, 2010 > Weather disrupts March Madness tourney
Weather disrupts March Madness tourney
By Biff Jones
Photos By Don Jedlovec
18th Annual March Madness softball tournament, hosted by Ohlone College, was to be held Saturday and Sunday, March 13-14, on the softball fields of Fremont's Central Park. Weekend weather was perfect for play however all four diamonds were a quagmire on Saturday because of Friday's rain.
Ohlone Renegades coach Donna Runyon and her team of volunteers worked all Saturday morning to get the fields setup to be dried by the afternoon wind and sun, before returning later in the day to rake them into playing shape. By about 7 p.m. they had the diamonds lined and ready for early Sunday morning action.
Ohlone opened up its play with a 7-5 victory over Porterville behind star pitcher, freshman Jessica Varaday. Chabot Gladiators played lost its first game of the tournament to Modesto, 4-2. Sophomore Shannon Merritt went the distance for the Gladiators and also doubled. Freshman catcher Stephanie Vandenbusch added two singles.
In the early afternoon contest, Ohlone took on Monterey Peninsula, a team they would meet again two days later in Monterey. Sophomore Kendall Beermann would pitch six and two-thirds before the game was called on the time-limit rule (1 hour, 45 minutes) with the hosts batting and holding a commanding 6-0 lead.
Beermann gave up three singles and two walks while striking out seven. Leading the Renegade onslaught were Mariah Jones (2-3, 2B), Shelby Tomasello (2-3, HR), Candace Christiansen (2-3, 2B) and Stefanie Hatley (2B).
Game two of the day for Chabot at saw Gladiators' coach Chelsea Spencer send freshman Jennica Bull to the mound against Taft and the young freshman had grounds to sue for lack of support. Chabot could only muster five singles (two by designated hitter Vandenbusch) and one walk in the team's two runs scored. Meanwhile, Bull went six and two-thirds before tiring as Taft won, 6-2.
In arguably the game of the day, two unbeaten clubs - Ohlone and College of Siskiyous - put their 2-0 records on the line. The game lived up to its expectations with Varaday and Siskiyous sophomore Jordyn Brown leading their respective team's in a pitchers' duel.
Brown scattered three singles and a walk, all coming in different innings, and induced 15 of the 27 outs by Ohlone on ground balls. Meanwhile, Varaday also gave up just three hits and a walk, but two of the hits - double and triple - came in the same inning, and it was enough for Siskiyous to squeak out a 1-0 victory.
Chabot's final game of the day pitted them against Coast Conference rival San Jose City, two teams that also will meet later this week in San Jose.
With the 105-minute limit running out and the score tied 5-5, the seventh inning was played under the international tiebreaker rules, where each team leads off its half of an inning by putting the leadoff hitter on second base with no outs.
Chabot scored one run in its half of and San Jose answered with one of its own in the bottom half. Chabot then put up a three spot in the eighth and the team from the South Bay tied it again at 9-9. Finally, the game would end in the 10th inning with City winning 11-10.
On Monday, March 15, Siskiyous played a double header at Chabot, one game against Chabot and another vs. Ohlone to makeup for missing anywhere from 1 to 3 games over the weekend. For the results (not available at press time) go to the TCV Sports Web site at www.tricityvoice.com/sports.
Earlier in the week, Chabot won one and lost two in Coast Conference North (CCN) league play while Ohlone won three CCN games.
Monday, March 8, saw Chabot host College of San Mateo and spot the visitors nine runs in the top of the first inning. San Mateo had an 11-1 lead going into the bottom of the third when the Gladiator bats caught fire, scoring two in the third; three in the fourth; and eight in the fifth to take a 14-11 lead, before going on to the 15-13 victory.
Leading Chabot was Merritt (3-4, HR, 4 RBIs, 3R, BB) and Raquel Savoy (4-4, 3 RBIs, R, BB).
Tuesday, Chabot hosted Monterey Peninsula and dropped a 6-4 decision then they traveled to Hartnell of Salinas on Thursday and were shutout, 3-0. Gladiators are now 3-2 in CCN play.
For Ohlone, it was all Varaday. Tuesday, March 9, the Renegades hosted Cabrillo and came away with a 3-0 victory behind the no-hit pitching of Varaday. (She did give up three walks.)
Wednesday, March 10, the Renegades traveled to De Anza of Cupertino in a make-up game. Beermann started for Ohlone and went the first four innings, giving up two runs before being relieved by Varaday. Varaday gave up another run in the fifth then shut out De Anza in the sixth and seventh for a 5-3 victory as the Renegades rallied with three in its half of the sixth and two in the seventh
On Thursday, March 11, the Renegades traveled to West Valley of Saratoga and Ohlone brought home a 10-0 complete game victory as Varaday pitched a perfect game. Antonia Gentry caught both no-hit performances by Varaday. Renegades are now 6-0 in CCN league play.