Tigers prepare for playoff push
by PI Staff
Apr 24, 2013 | 934 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Patterson High varsity softball team built a three-game winning streak April 12 to 19, rising in the Western Athletic Conference rankings and giving local playoff hopes a boost.

Following victories against Pacheco, Livingston and Central Valley highs, the Tigers (11-11-1 overall, 4-4 WAC) are in fourth place in the league — one game behind the third-place Ceres High Bulldogs (14-9, 5-3) with four games left in the regular season.

The top three teams in the league will qualify for the Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV playoffs.

“I believe that this team knows what they are capable of doing,” said Patterson coach Jennifer Hamm. “We all know (the final playoff spot) is right there for us to take or give away. It’s a matter of how the girls come mentally and physically prepared for each game.”

Right-handed pitcher Lucero Vargas won all three games inside the pitcher’s circle for Patterson.

On Friday, Vargas was in control, mowing through Central Valley (5-11, 2-5) as she scattered seven hits while striking out four batters in her seven innings of work.

The Tigers claimed a 3-2 victory against the visiting Hawks.

At the plate, Patterson batter Courtney Palla went 2-for-3. Leanna Lindsey had a triple, and Sadie Schut added a double for the Tigers.

That win followed on the heels of a 4-2 victory at home against Livingston (5-13, 2-6) on April 17.

Vargas again earned the win, allowing four hits while striking out eight batters in seven innings for Patterson.

Kianna Garza went 2-for-3 at the plate with a triple and an RBI, and Brianna Palafox was also 2-for-3.

“This is going to be a one-game-at-a-time process,” Hamm said. “Our goal is to win each inning of each game.”

On April 12, the Tigers hosted the Pacheco Panthers (8-13, 0-6) and recorded an 8-7 victory.

Vargas got the win against the school from Los Banos, striking out five in five innings of work.

Garza went 3-for-4 with an RBI, and Schut contributed two hits and drove in two runs.

Keana Lindsey went 2-for-2 with a double for Patterson.

“I’m very proud of these girls, but we still have a lot to work on for these next four games left in league,” Hamm said. “If we continue to play our game and do the little things right and execute like we should, this team will be a force to reckon with down the stretch.”

The Tigers will travel to Ceres High to continue their league season at 4 p.m. Friday, April 26.

Contact Marc Aceves at 892-6187, ext. 28, or marc@pattersonirrigator.com.

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