The shriek, "Snake!" came from the Gregori dugout at the Sacramento Softball Complex and girls were scurrying out of onto the field. The umps called time-out to take a look. Franklin head coach Jill Sanchez, coaching in the nearby coaching box, was seen backing away.
"Jill doesn't do snakes," she said later.
Gregori's catcher May Johns came right over, knelt down and had the head of the serpent, then had to pull the rest of the snake from under a board lining the bottom of the dugout. She then carried the snake down the fenceline to a weeded area lining the diamond. Upon her return to the plate Johns was greeted with a rousing round of applause.
It was Gregori's night and the No. 6 seed prevailed over the Wildcats, 5-3.
After about a five minute delay, the game was resumed. Franklin battled from being 2-0 down taking the lead at 3-2 in the fifth. Kaylee Moore and Courtney Jack each had an RBI single in that inning to tie the game. Mackenzie Vega drew a bases-loaded walk to briefly grab the lead. But Gregori's Nicole Stewart had a RBI double and a RBI single to lead her team's attack.
Sanchez had to console starting pitcher Taylor Keinath who came to the plate in the top of the seventh with the tying runs on the bases and struck out on a pair of pitches at her ankles. But, overall, Sanchez was pleased with the way her girls competed this year.
"We competed," she said. "We overcame some controllable and some uncontrollable things this year. I am just very please with how they played this year."
Gregori (16-6) which won the Modesto Metro League with a perfect 12-0 mark this year, now advances to a Saturday showdown with Vacaville. The Wildcats end the year with a 10-15-1 mark, but looking forward to a return to the playoffs next spring.
|Franklin coach Jill Sanchez|
Sheldon 10, Chavez 0
The batting of Maci Fines, Juju Malana and Maddy Ayers led the No. 1 seed Huskies to an easy five-inning win over Chavez on the opening day of play in the SJS Division I tournament. Head coach Mary Jo Truesdale, despite the ease of victory, wasn't pleased with the number of pop flies her girls hit Thursday.
"That's something definitely we'll work on during practice tomorrow," she promised. "You won't win big games if you continue to hit the ball up. You are always happy with a win here, but we need to continue to focus on the little things."
Vanessa Porto had three RBI's while Ayers also drove in three runs on a pair of doubles.
The Huskies will take on Oak Ridge at 9 a.m. Saturday as the double-elimination portion of the playoffs begin.
BaseballWoodcreek 8, Sheldon 3
Matt Manning walked a season-high six batters as the Huskies first visit to the playoffs since 2010 ended in the opening round.
Vanden 5, Laguna Creek 3
Petey Torres had a pair of triples including a run-scoring three-bagger in the 8th inning to lead Vanden to a Division II playoff opening win. The Cardinals, the Metro Conference champions, are out in the first round in its second consecutive playoff appearance.
Bradshaw Christian 11, Gustine 3
Looking for their fourth straight Division VI championship, the Pride got the playoffs off on the right foot with a big win over Gustine at Stagg High School in Stockton.
Michael Sinclair, Spencer Swain and Chase Chamberlain each homered. Sinclair drove in four runs while Chamberlain had three RBI's.
The Pride's next game will be Saturday at 3 p.m. against Mariposa.