Carson and Douglas split softball DH; both head to playoffs
Spanish Springs 18-2, Bishop Manogue 15-5, Douglas 14-6, Carson and Reed 13-7, Damonte 12-8, McQueen 9-11, Reno 7-13.
First-round pairings: Spanish Springs vs. Reno; Manogue vs. McQueen; Douglas vs. Damonte; Carson vs. Reed.
Tournament is Thursday, Friday and Saturday at Bishop Manogue. Games on Thursday are scheduled for 12:30, 2:30 and 4:30 p.m.
Carson High’s softball team started Saturday a game in back of arch-rival Douglas, and walked off the field the same way after the playoff-bound teams split the season-ending doubleheader at CHS.
Carson won the opener, 10-5, and Douglas took the second game, 5-3. The split put the Tigers as a No. 3 seed against Damonte Ranch in Thursday’s opener. Carson and Reed tied for fourth and will face each other in the first round.
“I’m proud of the girls they way they came out in the first game,” Carson coach Carlos Mendeguia said. “We had a good morning film session, and the girls executed very well offensively. I thought that Jailene (Salciedo) did a great job keeping them off balance at the plate.”
“It was a crazy day,” Douglas coach John Glover said. “There was a lot of emotion. We flat-out got beat that first game. Carson hit the ball hard. I was proud of the girls the way they bounced back in the second game.”
In the opener, Carson scored twice off Destiny Vaughan, as Salciedo tripled home Kedre Luschar and then scored on Kassidy Cooley’s infield roller.
Douglas answered in the top of the second when Casey Peck reached on an error by Kedre Luschar and scored when Alex Salciedo threw wildly trying to pick her off third.
The Senators rebounded with five in the second, knocking Vaughan from the circle.
Cam Quilling doubled to left-centerfield, moved to third and scored on a single by Nicole Brown, who moved to second on a passed ball and to third on Lauren Lemburg’s single. Brown and Lemburg worked a double steal with Brown scoring for a 4-1 lead.
Kailee Luschar was hit by a pitch and Kedre Luschar singled to load the bases. Salciedo bashed a single to the base of the fence in right-centerfield to score three runs. Kettja Bennett came on and retired three straight batters to end the uprising.
Salciedo went 5-for-7 in the two games, and was so proficient at the plate that Glover elected to walk her twice in the second game.
“She is one of the better hitters in the league,” Mendeguia said. “She is a trooper and had a great day.”
Douglas made it 7-3 in the top of the third on singles by MacKenzie Brixey, Haley Doughty and Chloie Pratt. Carson matched it in the bottom of the inning when Quilling doubled, moved to third on an infield out and scored on a passed ball.
Pratt and Alyssa Smokey led the Tigers with two hits apiece, and the Senators were led by Kailee Luschar, Kedre Luschar, Lemburg and Nicole Brown, all with three hits.
In the second game, Carson out-hit Douglas, 9-5, but was unable to get the key hit off Amanda Hoffman. The Tigers made Carson pay dearly for both of its errors.
“When you play a good team (like Douglas), it comes down to who makes the fewest mistakes,” Mendeguia said. “When you make a couple of errors, you are going to lose the game. We had a couple of throwing errors and a couple of baserunning mistakes.”
The Tigers broke up a scoreless game in the third with two runs on a throwing error by Amaya Mendeguia. As they did in the opener, Carson bounced back with a run in the bottom of the inning on Jailene Salciedo’s two-out single. Salciedo was trapped between first and second and thrown out.
Douglas made it 3-1 in the fourth on Pratt’s solo homer to left. Carson used a throwing error by Pratt and a single by Brown to make it 3-2 through four.
Bennett singled to lead off the fifth, setting the stage for Carson’s second defensive error. Peck dropped down a bunt, and Cooley missed when she attempted to tag Peck. Both runners scored on a single by Doughty to extend the lead to 5-2.
Carson had a chance to score in the fifth, but Kailee Luschar was called out on a look-back rule infraction. The play loomed large, especially after Jailene Salciedo doubled. The hit would have easily scored Luschar from first. Cooley popped to first to end the inning.
The Senators closed to 5-3 in the sixth when Alex Salciedo doubled and scored on Brown’s double.
That set the stage for an exciting seventh.
Douglas failed to score after Brixey’s one-out single, and things looked great for Carson in the bottom of the inning when Kailee Luschar singled and moved to third on Kedre Luschar’s double. Glover went out and talked to his pitcher, and after the conference was over, opted to put Salciedo on with an intentional walk to load the bases with no outs.
“Not at all,” Glover said when asked if he considered pitching to Salciedo. “We were talking about Cooley when I went out there. Then they put in a pinch-hitter, and we hadn’t seen her before.”
Glover was referring to freshman Taylor Murphy, who hit a soft line drive back to Hoffman, who doubled the runner off first. Amaya Mendeguia flied to right to end the game.
“She (Cooley) was having a rough day (0-for-7) at the plate,” coach Mendeguia said.