On Thursday, March 30, the Matadors took on Los Gatos HS. The Matadors scored their first few runs late in the game and had opportunities in the sixth and seventh innings to tie the game up., However in the end, the Matadors lost, 5-2.
In the beginning of the game, the Matadors were able to hold off any potential runs from LGHS. Thanks to senior Danielle Koontz’s fast pitches, the softballs missed Los Gatos players’ bats and landed right in the palm of catcher Aly Olkein’s glove. Seniors Mika Maenaga, Hailee Huber and Kaitlynn Yamauchi were just some of the players who were able to stall LGHS’ offense by catching pop-ups, which were thought to be going foul until the trick of the wind blew the ball back in play.Senior Danielle Koontz practices her swings during the sixth inning.
“Irene’s gonna start something for us now” said a parent on the bleachers as sophomore Irene McNelis stepped up to bat in the fourth quarter. Though McNelis didn’t score a run, she did hit a single late into her at-bat, ; the base hit was a promising sign for the Matadors as the score read 3-0 in favor of LGHS.
The hopes of catching up to LGHS elevated in the sixth inning, when a hit from Koontz sent Olkein running to third base. Olkein hesitated running home after the ball landed, thinking an LGHS player had caught it, but a loud “Go” from the MVHS parents and team convinced her otherwise. A strong hit from junior Ann-Marie Manley sent her running to third base, and helped Koontz reach home, making the score 3-2. Although a promising tie was near, the inning didn’t finish as the Matadors had hoped.
“We had [Manley] on third and to tie it up all we needed was base hit. It was very doable to get the run scored in. Unfortunately we couldn’t come up with clutch hit to get her through” Maenaga said. “That was probably the inning where we had the most energy. When it’s close like that, we tend to really want to win and get excited.”
In the seventh inning, LGHS had two players on second and third base. As LGHS came up to bat, the play was paused as coach Raymond Texeria pulled the players in for a last minute team huddle. As soon as the game resumed, a strong hit from LGHS sent the players on second and third base running home, ending the game 5-3.
The team congratulated Los Gatos, then began to clean up the field, smoothing out the bases and packing equipment away. Though the team does this after every game, the routine felt different.
“This game was a bit of a disappointment,”Maenaga said as she and the other members of the team walked off the field. “There are certain games that we have to win in order to get to CCS. The thing is this, was a very winnable game.”
MVHS next game will be @ Piedmont Hills on Tuesday April 4 @4pm