This Week in Softball: Top teams in EBAL and WCAL meet for the first time this season

The top ten games for the week of April 23-29 begins with three matchups involving teams ranked among the top nine in our Bay Area rankings.

This includes the top teams in the EBAL and WCAL who each play Wednesday and have yet to meet one another this season.


1. #1 Amador Valley at #5 Granada, Wednesday 4

These teams haven’t met yet but will play twice in the next two weeks and the EBAL will be at stake as Amador Valley has a one-game lead on the Matadors.

The Dons have won six straight meetings against Granada, all by shutout. The Mats have been outscored 46-0 in those games against Johanna Grauer and company.

This year’s Granada team is better than the past three seasons and have averaged 7.8 runs per game.

2. #9 Valley Christian at #2 Archbishop Mitty, Wednesday 3:30 Continue reading

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Bay Area Softball Rankings: April 23

Previous week’s rankings in parentheses

1. (1) Amador Valley 16-0

Johanna Grauer allowed two hits and struck out 14 in a 3-0 win over San Ramon Valley last week, her 10th shutout of the season.

2. (2) Archbishop Mitty 20-0

The Monarchs beat three ranked teams in the past week with wins over Notre Dame, Soquel, and Hillsdale. In those games, Desiree Severance pitched 16.1 innings without allowing an earned run, struck out 15, and gave up just five hits.

3. (3) Alhambra 14-2

Hailey Sparacino hit her sixth home run and raised her average to .438 in a 14-1 win over Las Lomas.

4. (4) Carlmont 17-3

Rebecca Faulkner struck out ten , allowed just three hits and also drove in two runs in the Scots 11-1 win over Sequoia on Tuesday.

5. (5) Granada 14-2 Continue reading

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This Week in Baseball: Elite Eight Tournament, Cunningham Easter Classic, plus BVAL, DFAL, MCAL, and SCL showdowns

Last week, we profiled the Boras Classic, which included nationally ranked St. Francis.

The Lancers didn’t win the Northern California championship but allowed just four runs in three games, including a 2-1 defeat to Elk Grove in the NorCal final.

This week, St. Francis is hosting the marquee event involving Bay Area teams with the annual Elite Eight Baseball Tournament.

The action starts Tuesday and it involves loaded pitching staffs and five teams that are ranked among the top 13 in our latest Bay Area Top 25 Rankings. Continue reading

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Bay Area Baseball Top 25 Rankings

These are based on games played through April 19.

Previous week’s rankings are in parentheses.

1. (1) St. Francis 16-3

The Lancers advanced to the Northern California championship game of the Boras Classic but fell, 2-1, to last season’s Sac-Joaquin champion, Elk Grove. Before that defeat, the St. Francis pitching and defense recorded a 2-0 win over Yuba City, a 3-2 win over Pleasant Grove, and a 3-0 victory against Clovis West when John Gavin pitched a two-hitter and struck out 14.

2. (2) Archbishop Mitty 16-5

After falling to Oak Ridge, 2-1, the Monarchs went on to win three straight and take ninth place in the Boras Classic.

Mitty scored eight runs in each of the wins and Tommy Hudson had five hits in his last seven at bats, including four runs batted in.

3. (5) Valley Christian-San Jose 14-6

The Warriors impressively reached the championship game of the National Classic before a 3-2 loss to Huntington Beach in the final.

Ben Hughes pitched a two-hitter in a 4-0 win over Greenway-Arizona and Bryson Brigman was 6-for-14 in the four games.

4. (3) California 13-2

The Grizzlies avenged its first loss by overcoming a 4-0 hole in a 7-5 win versus Foothill as A.J. Velasquez hit his fourth homer of the season.

5. (4) De La Salle 13-4

The Spartans finished in seventh place of the Boras Classic after dropping a 1-0 contest to Pleasant Grove in its opening game.

The De La Salle bats came alive in a 11-0 win over Foothill-Palo Cedro and a 11-1 decision against Granite Bay. In the two games, Ben Polshuk went 5-for-6 with a couple of doubles and three runs batted in.

6. (6) Bellarmine 15-4 Continue reading

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Softball: The Santa Teresa and Standley Cup Tourneys Highlight the Week Ahead

With many schools enjoying spring break, there isn’t a heavy schedule of premier games.

There are, however, a couple of interesting tournaments.

The Santa Teresa Tournament begins with preliminary games on Friday and Saturday before the championship game and consolation contests on April 26.

This tourney features some of the top CCS teams, including four teams that are ranked among the top 16 in our Bay Area Rankings. Continue reading

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Bay Area Softball Rankings: April 16

Previous week’s rankings in parentheses

1. (1) Amador Valley 15-0

The Dons outscored Cal and Foothill by a combined 22-3 margin in the past week.

Ashley Lotosynski stopped a 0-for-13 spell with two hits versus Cal and a homer and five runs batted in against rival Foothill.

2. (2) Archbishop Mitty 17-0

The Monarchs have won 37 straight WCAL games after recording a nice 6-1 home win over Presentation on Tuesday. Desiree Severance struck out 10 and allowed just three hits.

3. (3) Alhambra 13-2

The Bulldogs won its 42nd straight league game with a 3-0 win over Dougherty Valley, who was 4-0 in league. Erin Enke struck out 13 and allowed just one hit.

4. (6) Carlmont 16-3

Rebecca Faulkner pitched a six-inning no-hitter and also had three hits of her own in a 12-0 win over Burlingame on Thursday.

5. (4) Granada 13-2

6. (7) Leland 12-3

The Chargers suffered a loss to Mt. Pleasant, a team it had beat twice, but recorded big wins over Pioneer and Soquel. Continue reading

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Boras Classic highlights an exciting week of baseball for Bay Area teams

There are no state or regional championships in baseball and there won’t be unless all of the fall and winter schedules move up so the spring schedule can be started a few weeks earlier. It’s simply too much to ask to play state baseball playoff games so long after graduation.

While it’s nearly impossible to pull off a midseason tournament that fairly includes all of the top teams in the state, the Boras Classic may be the closest thing that baseball fans can ask for regarding a California state championship.

The Boras Classic includes a 16-team Northern California bracket and a 16-team Southern California bracket. These brackets will be played out this week and then the North winner will play the South winner on May 3rd at Stockton’s University of Pacific in a nationally televised championship game. Continue reading

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Bay Area Baseball Top 25 Rankings

These are based on games played through April 12.

Previous week’s rankings are in parentheses.

1. (1) St. Francis 13-2

The Lancers have allowed one run or less in 11 of 15 games this season

In three wins last week, Blake Billinger was 5-for-9 with two doubles, a home run, and seven runs batted in.

In a 4-1 win over St. Ignatius, Tyler Deason allowed his first earned run of the season and now has a 0.21 earned run average.

St. Francis plays in the Boras Classic this week and opens with 9-4 Yuba City.

2. (2) Archbishop Mitty 13-4

After falling 1-0 at Bellarmine on Friday, the Monarchs play in the Boras Classic and open with 7-5 Oak Ridge on Tuesday.

3. (3) California 12-2

After a 5-3 loss at Amador Valley on Friday, Cal’s only two losses are to the Pleasanton schools.

The Grizzlies offense has a team .908 OPS and four regulars, Cameron Santos, Trent Kravitz, A.J. Velasquez, and Nick Allman, each have an OPS over a thousand.

4. (4) De La Salle 10-3

The Spartans play in the Boras Classic and open with Pleasant Grove on Monday. A win and De La Salle could get a rematch with St. Francis in the quarterfinals.

5. (5) Valley Christian-San Jose 11-5 Continue reading

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Top 10 Softball Games for the Week (April 9-15)

The top ten softball games of the next week (April 9-15) include many matchups involving ranked teams and teams that are unbeaten in league.

1. #5 Pioneer at #7 Leland, Wednesday 4

Both teams are 5-0 in the Mt. Hamilton and have lengthy winning streaks.

Pioneer, behind ace Holly Azevedo, has won 14 in a row and Leland, with ace Holly Geranen, has taken eight in a row.

Defending Mt. Hamilton champion Leland swept the season-series last season and has won three straight meetings.


2. #14 Valley Christian-San Jose at #19 Notre Dame-Belmont, Thursday 3:30

Notre Dame is alone in second in the West Catholic league and scored a 3-0, eight-inning win over the Warriors last month as Lindsey Milfud outdueled Brynne Fitzpatrick.

Despite the March defeat, Valley Christian has won nine of the past 11 meetings.


3. #17 Soquel at San Lorenzo Valley, Tuesday 4 Continue reading

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Bay Area Softball Rankings: April 9

These rankings are based on games played through April 8.

1. Amador Valley 13-0

Arizona State commit Johanna Grauer has not allowed an earned run (4 runs overall) in 93.1 innings over 13 starts. Grauer also has 144 strikeouts and pitched her team to the Michelle Carew Classic championship last week.

The Dons, who are ranked second in the country by MaxPreps, were represented well on the Carew Classic all-tournament team. Grauer was most valuable pitcher, Victoria Molina was most valuable player, and Sammy Salustri and Nicole Yozzo were on the all-tourney team.

2. Archbishop Mitty 15-0

The Monarchs, ranked fourth in the country by MaxPreps, are coming off a championship in the competitive Livermore Stampede and now have nine shutout wins behind ace Desiree Severance. The junior ace and Drexel commit is tied for first in the CCS with 11 wins while shortstop Jazmyn Jackson is hitting .605

3. Alhambra 12-2

The only losses for the Bulldogs are to Los Alamitos and Amador Valley and UCLA commit Kylee Perez has four homers and 17 runs batted in despite 12 walks. Fellow senior Hailey Sparacino is first in the NCS with 32 runs batted in and fourth in the section with five home runs.

Freshman Karlee Sparacino is second in the NCS with a .711 batting average.

4. Granada 12-1

The Matadors only loss was a 12-1 defeat to Mitty in the Stampede over the weekend but Granada already has six wins against EBAL opponents.

5. Pioneer 14-2

Since opening with losses to Mitty and Wilcox, Pioneer has won 14 straight games, including a good 7-0 win over Carlmont on Saturday in the Wilcox tournament. Freshman Holly Azevedo is 9-1 with a 1.07 earned run average, which is eighth in the CCS. Continue reading

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