SARATOGA, Calif. - Scheduling 2017 NorCal champion San Joaquin Delta for Thursday's home opener provided just the early season test the West Valley softball team was looking for. On a picture-perfect Saratoga afternoon, the Vikings responded with a 9-6 win over the Mustangs. Jessell Lewiswent the distance, scattering nine hits, striking out two and walking only a pair, to pick up the win in the circle. Courtney Coombs was 2-4 with three RBI, and Samantha Fletes and Maddy Lucey were both 2-3 to lead an 11-hit WVC offensive attack.
The Vikings (2-1) grabbed a 2-0 1st inning lead on a leadoff single from Janelle McAfee, an RBI single from Coombs and a bases-loaded walk to Siobhan Taylor. Lewis struggled in the 2nd, giving up three Delta runs on a pair of singles, a walk and two sacrifice flies. Lucey opened the fourth with an infield single, followed by a single from Alex Pussich. Both would score on Malia Pula's double up the middle to give WVC a 4-3 lead. The Vikings made it 7-3 in the bottom of the fifth after a walk to Taylor, a double from Haley Walker and a two-run triple to right from Lucey. Lucey would score on a McAfee sacrifice.
Back-to-back singles from Raquel Riveira and Eryn McWhorter gave the Mustangs (0-1) a run in the top of the sixth, but the Vikings would answer with two of their own in the home half. Reina Maldonado and Fletes banged out singles and then scored on a Coombs single. Delta added two runs in the seventh, but Riveira's slow roller to Taylor at second ended the game.
West Valley heads to Santa Rosa on Saturday for games against the Bear Cubs (10 a.m.) and Shasta (2 p.m.) before returning home to face crosstown rival De Anza on Tuesday at noon.
(Matt Folsom, West Valley Athletics)