By Wes McCurtis
CYPRESS, CA - No. 1 Cypress softball (45-0) will make their 26th appearance in the CCCAA State Championship Tournament this year after knocking off No. 4-seeded Palomar (30-13) in Sunday's CCCAA Super Regional Final, 11-4. The 2017 State Championships will take place this Friday-Sunday (May 18-21) at Bakersfield College. The four team double-elimination tournament will feature the top-seeded Chargers and Mt. San Antonio from the south, along with San Mateo and San Joaquin Delta from the north.
Freshman pitcher Hailey Hoffman (W, 3-0) got the start and the win for Cypress. Hoffman allowed 4 runs on 9 hits in her first career postseason appearance. Destiny Vasquez pitched a shutout with 3 strikeouts in 2.2 innings of relief. "I know I have the right people behind me. Our defense helps out a lot and I really trust this team," said Vasquez. "Hailey played really well. We all knew she was excited for this opportunity and I told her that I knew she'd play great."
Cypress sophomore Jenny Vasquez nearly hit for the cycle. Vasquez finished 3-for-5, including a double, triple, and a homerun, with 4 RBI to power the Cypress offense.
After holding the Chargers to just 3 hits in yesterday's 9-inning thriller, Crystal DesLauriers (L, 23-7), received the loss for Palomar after giving up 7 runs on 7 hits in 4.0 innings. Trinity Fa'asua allowed 4 runs on 5 hits in 3.0 innings of relief.
The Chargers took control of the game early. After a leadoff groundout, Sydney McCollum (3-for-4, 2 RBI) reached on a double to left field. Jenny Vasquez followed up with an RBI double to score McCollum before advancing to third on a wild pitch. Following back-to-back walks, Destiny Vasquez drilled a 2 RBI single to left field, giving Cypress a 4-0 lead.
Cypress added 2 runs to their total in the second before erupting for another 4 runs in the third inning. Leading 6-0 with 2 on and 2 out in the third inning, McCollum slapped an RBI single to center field. With runners at first and third Jenny Vasquez sent a deep 3-run shot over the left field wall to put the Chargers up 10-0.
The Comets rallied to score 4 runs in the fifth, highlighted by a 2-run homer to right field by Moriah Lopez (3-for-4, 2 RBI, HR), but it would not be enough. The Chargers added an insurance run in the sixth and went on to win, 11-4.
"They played awesome today," said Head Coach Brad Pickler. "Everybody played well. Hoffman stepped up and everybody hit the ball. We were on it."
The No. 1 Chargers will open up the State Final Four against the North's No. 2-seeded San Joaquin Delta on Friday. Cypress hopes to become the first team in CCCAA softball history to win a State Championship without a loss.
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