CYPRESS, CA – The Cypress College softball team (1-0) began their state championship title defense on Wednesday afternoon, as they opened the 2018 season at home against the Rio Hondo College Roadrunners (2-4-1). The Chargers retooled during the offseason and picked up where they left off, defeating Rio Hondo by mercy rule in six innings, 8-0.
Sophomore pitcher Hope Davalos (W, 1-0) put on a clinic in her debut for the Chargers. Davalos pitched a 1-hit shutout with 6 strikeouts in 5.0 innings of work. The sophomore duo of Sydney McCollum (2-for-3, 3B) and Tianna Harris (3-for-3) powered the Cypress offense.
Cypress got off to a quick start, taking a 3-run lead in the first inning. McCollum scored the first run of the season on a wild pitch tossed by Rio Hondo's Taylor Rodriguez (L, 1-1). Cypress freshman Gabrielle Munoz (2-for-3, RBI) would advance home from third on another wild pitch to take a 2-0 lead, before Kellee Ross (1-for-3, RBI) drilled an RBI single to left, scoring Harris.
The Roadrunners made a pitching change in the second inning to try and cool down the Chargers' bats, but Cypress continued to add to their lead, posting a run in the second and third inning to take a 5-0 lead.
After being held scoreless in the fourth, the Chargers added two more runs in the fifth inning. Infinity Laufou (1-for-1, 2 RBI) sent a 2RBI line drive double back to the center field fence to give Cypress a 7-0 lead.
Harris would score the game's final run from third on a throwing error to seal the mercy-rule victory.
Softball will return to action this Saturday in a home double-header. The Chargers are set to host Bakersfield at 10:30 a.m. followed by a matchup against Antelope Valley at 2:30 p.m.
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