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Lady Cougars Crowned Trans-Valley League Champs
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Splitting their final two games of the season, Escalon's varsity Lady Cougars went 13-2 in Trans-Valley League play, winning the title outright and advancing to the playoffs as the league's number one seed.

They were on the road for the last two games of the season, falling at Modesto Christian on Tuesday, May 5 and winning at Ripon in the regular season finale on Thursday, May 7.

At MC, one run did the trick as the host Crusaders took a 1-0 win off the field.

Escalon had eight hits on the day but were unable to get a run across. Modesto Christian had just one hit. They scored in the third, with a single, a stolen base, a walk and a line drive that took the glove off first baseman Jordon Costa's hand, with the run coming in.

Despite their eight hits and having the bases loaded twice and runners at first and second another time, the Lady Cougars just could not get anyone home.

"Casey Schmidig had a single, Rachel Frasier had a single, Jordon had a double, Lounette Jackson had a single, Kattie Schmidig was 2-for-4, Breanna Brodie and Sam Lorigo had singles," coach Dianne Teixeira said of rapping out several hits on the day.

On Thursday, the girls regrouped after suffering just their third loss of the season (one in preseason, two in league) and closed out the campaign on a high note, defeating Ripon by a 5-1 final.

Ripon got their one run in the bottom of the first, Escalon countered with single runs in the second, fifth and sixth, with two in the seventh.

"We finally got the bats going," Teixeira said, noting that they had 10 total hits on the day while Lady Cougar Caitlin Brooks had another strong outing on the mound, giving up just one run on one hit, her second one-hitter of the week.

In the second, Costa doubled and stole third, with Lorigo driving her in with a single. Fifth inning action saw Casey Schmidig get on with a single, Frasier followed with a bunt and Jackson had an RBI single.

Brodie singled in the sixth and moved up on a passed ball, with Lorigo notching a single.

The two runs in the seventh came in dramatic fashion, with a double by Jackson and a two-run blast over the centerfield fence by Brooks.

Jackson was 3-for-4 on the day, Costa 2-for-4, with Brodie and Lorigo each getting two hits, Brooks with one.

"We started off slow, didn't really start hitting until the fifth," Teixeira said. "Their pitcher was a little slower than we've seen, but by the second or third time through the line up, they had it down, knew how to time it."

At 13-2 in league and 23-3 overall, the girls are TVL champs and eager to keep it going.

"We've done great so far, we just need to keep that enthusiasm going," Teixeira said. "Sole possession of first place in the TVL is great ... but we just have to keep hitting."

The girls will start their playoff run on Wednesday, May 13 in a 5 p.m. game against Linden at Arnaiz Stadium in Stockton.