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CIF softball: Centurions let a win slip away

Error in seventh inning leads to loss against Foothill in CIF-SS Div. I second round

Posted: May 23, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Updated: May 23, 2012 1:55 a.m.
 

Saugus softball wasn’t necessarily supposed to be in this situation, leading by a run in the bottom of the seventh inning in the second round of the CIF-Southern Section Division I playoffs.

After all, it had lost 12 players off its 2011 Foothill League champion team.

But after the Centurions blew a lead to lose 4-3 on Tuesday afternoon at Foothill High School, they couldn’t help but feel like they not only belonged, but that they should have advanced.

Sophomore pitcher Brandi Burgin was in control for most of the game, and her team was in a position to win up a run in the bottom of the seventh.

The Knights (14-13) loaded the bases with two outs in the inning, but Burgin induced a fly ball to right field that could have ended the game and sent Saugus (22-8-1) to the quarterfinals.

But the right fielder misplayed the ball, allowing it to drop in front of her to score two and send Saugus home.

“It’s pretty tough, we should have been all out 100 percent and didn’t go hard for the ball,” said Saugus head coach Julie Watson. “We have to know the situation.”

Saugus scored once in the third and twice in the fifth to take the lead on RBIs by juniors Alanna Layton and Kayla Morrow, but it wasn’t enough to keep a roller coaster season going.

After winning the league last season, Saugus appeared to be right on its way to defending the title through the first half of the league season.

Saugus won its first four league games behind strong pitching from Layton and Burgin, including a 3-1 win on the road over Valencia on April 17.

But things soured after a 13-0 loss to eventual league champion West Ranch on April 24 that led to three straight league losses.

Eventually, the Centurions righted the ship in time to finish second in league.

“This was a rough loss for us,” Watson said. “We were bringing back the momentum and playing well, and to drop this game was tough for us. We have so much potential. We’re still young and it was a good season overall.”

Still, Tuesday was a game the Centurions would love to have back.

“We gave that game away,” Watson said. “We had errors at the wrong times. We outhit them. It wasn’t anything that (Foothill) did. We gave the game up.”

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