Walnut, CA - After falling behind 4-3 in the fourth, Sierra College rallied with a four-run bottom of the sixth inning on Thursday evening at the 2018 CCCAA State Softball Championships. The Wolverines came back on the defending State Champs Cypress College, sending the Chargers into the elimination bracket, and advancing to the quarterfinals with a 7-4 victory.
The game's first runs came in the bottom of the first, when Sierra freshman Toni Whipkey followed up a double by freshman Virgie Robello with a two-run blast over the left field fence. The Wolverines would add to that in the bottom of the second with a solo shot to dead center field by freshman Emily Smith, giving Sierra a 3-0 lead.
With Sierra getting some big early shots in, it took some time for Cypress to warm-up, but when they did, they had a huge top of the third. Freshman Destiny Lucero got things rolling with a solo home run to left field. After a strikeout, and a walk by sophomore Sydney McCollum, freshman Infinity Laufou launched a monster home run down the left field line to make it 3-3. Two at bats later, the Chargers would take the lead when sophomore Kellee Ross hit a double off the left field wall, plating sophomore Kiani Puailoa and making it 4-3.
After some early firepower, both squads slowed in the middle innings. Sierra put a runner on in each of third, fourth, and fifth innings, but nothing came of any of them. Cypress was likewise stonewalled in the fourth, fifth, and sixth.
Things got interesting again in the bottom of the sixth, but not necessarily thanks to any big hits but because of Cypress errors. The Chargers committed two errors in the inning, that helped lead to four Sierra runs. Sierra's Smith helped the cause with an RBI single down the left field line.
Cypress would make one last attempt in the top of the seventh. After a groundout to start the inning, the Chargers' Laufou got hit by a pitch. After a popup to short, Cypress got even more new life when an error by Sierra put runners on second and third. A few pitches later, the Cypress bases were loaded when Ross was hit by a pitch. Sierra avoided a comeback though when freshman Amaryssa Medina induce a groundout to short.
Medina (26-3) earned the victory, going seven strong, giving up four runs and two walks. Medina struck out 11 batters on the day, including catching five of those 11 looking. Sierra's Smith finished 3-for-3 with a pair of runs scored and two RBIs.
Sierra will take on Palomar College in the winners bracket tomorrow at 1:30 PM at Mt. San Antonio College. Cypress meanwhile till take on San Joaquin Delta College in a elimination contest at Citrus College at 11:00 AM.