Pitman High continued its quest to the top of the Central California Conference softball standings this week with its sweep of rival Turlock High. The Pride (6-2 CCC) played the Bulldogs (0-8 CCC) on Wednesday and Thursday, winning their first matchup 8-2 and their second 10-0.
“Their pitching was not as strong as ours,” Pitman’s head coach Cassie Sheppherd said. “They have a really young team as well. It kind of turned out how we expected.”
Team leader Janessa Guevara manned the mound for the Pride on Wednesday, putting in another dominant performance. Guevara’s strong arm kept Turlock away from home plate and cleared the way for Pitman’s offense to jump out to an early lead. The Pride scored two runs in the first inning, another in the second, and two more in the third. Pitman’s final three runs came in the fifth inning and held a lead of 8-0 going into the sixth. Two sixth inning Pitman errors finally led to two Bulldog runs, but by that time the game had already been decided.
Guevara, who pitched a complete game, finished the day with 12 strike outs. Guevara has averaged 11 strike outs a game in league play and is on pace to match her impressive performance from a year ago.
Pitman’s defense maintained its control over Turlock on Thursday, this time with Alexis Mettler on the mound. The Pride committed no errors this time around, shutting out the Bulldogs and improving on their offensive performance from the day before.
“Our fielding and hitting was much better on the second day. We made better decisions on base and scored more,” Sheppherd said. “It was a good day.”
Mettler faced 17 Bulldog batters and struck four of them out as her supporting cast helped take care of the rest. Pitman’s defensive security allowed its girls to focus on the offensive side of the ball, where they had a field day. Seven Pride batters had a batting percentage of .500 or better with Sarah Mayfield, Nicole Bailey, Skylar Taylor, and Kelsey Sheppherd finishing the day with a 1.000 average.
Mayfield earned three runs and three RBIs, Bailey earned one RBI, Taylor earned two runs and one RBI and Sheppherd earned one run and one RBI. Guevara also helped on offense with two runs as did Elizabeth Segars and Mettler, who had one and two runs respectively.
Pitman is currently riding a five game win streak. With Turlock behind them, the Pride now has their sights set on Merced High, their closest competition for the top spot in the CCC.
“It’s going to be a tight race this year,” Sheppherd said. “We need to keep our streak alive and keep our momentum going but the number one thing we need to do is beat Merced.”