Preps

Thursday, May 01 2014 10:01 PM

Olson's clutch hitting powers Frontier rally past Stockdale

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Stockdale High batter Maryssa Melendez gets some encouragement from her coach Amanda Hockett at third base after hitting a triple past the Frontier High right fielder Thursday.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Stockdale High's starting pitcher McKenna Valencia throws a nice pitch to a Frontier High batter.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    The Frontier High Titans cheer on their batter while playing Thursday against the Stockdale High team.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Frontier High's catcher Taylor Brancato makes a tough catch behind the plate after a Stockdale batter pops up a foul ball during Thursday's game.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Frontier High's batter Isabella Gonzalez ducks out of the way from a high pitch against Stockdale High Thursday.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian'

    Stockdale High's shortstop Lucy Lopez goes after the throw to second as Frontier High's Isabella Gonzales dives head first safely into second base Thursday.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Frontier High's Isabella Gonzalez makes the long safely into second as Stockdale High's shortstop Lucy Lopez goes after the throw her way.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Frontier High's Isabella Gonzalez tags second after a head first dive while Stockdale High's Lucy Lopez goes after the ball Thursday.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Frontier HIgh's Isabella Gonzalez kicks up the dust as she lands safetly at second base during after a hit and long slide into second Thursday against the Mustangs.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Frontier High's starting pitcher Tori Lamb hurls one toward the strike zone against a Stockdale High batter.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Stockdale High's shortstop Lucy Lopez makes a nice stop before the throw to first against a Frontier High batter during game action Thursday at Stockdale.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Frontier High hitter Isabella Gonzalez gets a hit Thursday against the Frontier Titans.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    The Stockdale High players get ready for Thursday's game against Frontier High on a hot Bakersfield afternoon.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    The Frontier and Stockdale coaches go over the ground rules with the umpire before Thursday's game at Stockdale.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    The Stockdale HIgh Mustangs get ready to start their game Thursday against Frontier High including Aryka Chavez, #14, and her teammates.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Frontier High softball players shield thier eyes from the bright, afternoon sun before the game Thursday against Stockdale High.

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BY ZACH EWING Californian staff writer zewing@bakersfield.com

Frontier sophomore Kaycee Olson figured that with her team down to its final strike, she had to swing at any pitch close. And even, as it turned out, pitches that weren't so close.

Olson hit a bases-loaded single on a pitch that was barely above the ground with two outs in the seventh inning to lead Frontier to a 4-3 comeback win against host Stockdale on Thursday.

"I just felt like I had to get a base hit for my team, just put it in play somewhere," Olson said. "When you put it in play, good things happen."

An inning earlier, Olson had put another ball into -- and then out of -- play, sending a home run over the left-field fence to break up a shutout bid from Stockdale pitcher McKenna Valencia.

That made it 3-1 Mustangs, and Emily Escobar's leadoff homer in the seventh cut the lead to 3-2.

That was the score when Olson came up with the bases loaded and two outs. Stockdale reliever Aymee Broome threw two strikes, then Olson chopped a single over the out-stretched glove of third baseman Marissa Moran. One run came in to tie the game, and when left fielder Maryssa Melendez briefly bobbled the ball, Izzy Gonzalez sprinted home to make it 4-3.

Olson finished 3-for-4, but she had the Titans' only two hits through the first six innings.

"We had 12 hits on Tuesday; I kept waiting for them to start coming today," Frontier coach Trevor Bazemore said. "Kaycee has been on fire, so when she comes up in that situation, you're confident. She hit the ball off her toes, and then (Gonzalez) had some heads-up baserunning."

Tori Lamb got out of a two-on, two-out jam in the bottom of the seventh to finish a complete-game victory.

It was the first time in school history Frontier (20-10, 9-4 Southwest Yosemite League) won the season series with Stockdale.

"With only one week left and playoffs right around the corner, it would be a good time to get hot," Bazemore said. "We're hitting well and pitching well. It's an exciting time to coach this team."

As for Stockdale (12-16, 6-7), it must sweep Bakersfield in two games next week to meet the school criterion for going to the playoffs (.500 or above in league or overall). The Mustangs wasted a good performance by Valencia, who took advantage of a consistently generous strike zone and three big hits: A two-out RBI double from Valencia in the first, a leadoff double from Lucy Lopez in the third and a one-out triple from Melendez in the fifth, all producing a run.

"With most of the teams in our league, you can't take any lead for granted," Stockdale coach Amanda Hockett said. "We just told them it's in our hands next week. We can't worry about anybody else now."

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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