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CIF softball: Vikes’ new season starts

Mortensen tosses two-hitter to help Valencia move to round 2

Posted: May 18, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Updated: May 18, 2012 1:55 a.m.
 

As far as Valencia softball is concerned, it’s a whole new season.

The Vikings aren’t worried about where they finished in the Foothill League and they aren’t worried about where, or who they play next.

Valencia just wants to stay alive, and it did that with a 3-1 win over Los Osos of Rancho Cucamonga on Thursday at Los Osos High in a CIF-Southern Section Division I first-round playoff game.

Carly Mortensen threw a complete-game two-hitter, allowing just one unearned run in a winning effort in the circle.
She struck out 14 in the process.

“She was in the zone,” said Valencia head coach Donna Lee of the senior right-hander.

Valencia (20-10 overall) earned a second-round date at home against Orange Lutheran on Tuesday.

After finishing tied for second place in the Foothill League, the Vikings were forced to play on the road in the first round for the second straight year.

Lee isn’t concerned given her team’s renewed attitude.

“When you’re playing in your own backyard when everybody knows you and knows how to pitch you, it can be tough,” Lee said. “When you’re playing outside of your valley, it makes it so much more easy to just relax and play. We just stepped up.”

Kristina Brackpool was the one who put Valencia ahead on Thursday when she knocked a two-out, two-RBI double in the fifth inning, scoring Tawni O’Brien and Wendy Cardinali.

Sarah Solano gave Valencia some insurance with an RBI single in the sixth before the Grizzlies (20-7) scored their lone run in the bottom half of the inning to set the final score at 3-1.

Solano finished the game 2-for-3 at the plate.

O’Brien led off the fifth inning by getting hit by a Los Osos pitch and Cardinali got aboard with a single to right field. She then stole second to set up Brackpool’s two-run double.

The Vikings took a more aggressive approach on the basepaths than usual, which is something the team may incorporate as the playoffs continue.

“Everybody’s got to do something a little bit differently in the playoffs,” Lee said. “Everybody’s got to tweak something.”

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