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Shutout Win Over Modesto Christian For Varsity Softball

Tuesday's scheduled game with Riverbank on April 7 was rained out, but the varsity Lady Cougars did dodge the raindrops successfully on Thursday, April 9 and got past the visiting Modesto Christian Crusaders, 1-0.

"We knew it was going to come down to one bobble of the ball or one hit," coach Dianne Teixeira said of the game, with the two teams very evenly matched.

Each team had a leadoff double in the early going that they couldn't make into a run and it wasn't until the fifth inning that the Lady Cougars pushed one across the plate.

"Breanna Brodie tripled to right center, it rolled to the fence," Teixeira said of getting the leadoff hit to start the bottom of the fifth. "After a strikeout, Morgan Eisenga had a single and got the RBI."

Eisenga, in fact, was 2-for-2 on the day with a single and a double, both going down the third base line.

Escalon had earlier gotten Casey Schmidig to third but couldn't bring her in and Eisenga doubled to lead off the third but didn't score.

Modesto Christian countered with a leadoff double in the top of the fourth and she moved over to third on a passed ball. After pitcher Caitlin Brooks got the next batter on a strikeout, Modesto Christian put on the bunt. It went up the first base line, where Jordon Costa scooped it up, checked the runner at third and then tagged out the base runner for the second out of the inning. Brooks notched another strikeout, leaving the MC runner stranded at third.

Escalon ended the game with one run on four hits and made two errors. Modesto Christian had no runs on one hit with one error. Brooks had 15 strikeouts and did issue an intentional walk to MC's big hitter to load the bases and set up the force play at any base in an early inning.

"She had hit a home run the game before," Teixeira noted of taking the bat out of the player's hands.

The strategy worked, as the Cougars kept MC off the scoreboard, improving to 8-0 in Trans-Valley League play, 18-1 overall.

Escalon's hits included Eisenga's single and double, the triple from Brodie and a single by Brooks.

The game started with a light rain falling and it rained intermittently throughout the contest.

"The field held up pretty well," Teixeira said.

With most schools out this week for Spring Break, as opposed to Escalon's break last week, the girls do not have any league games on the schedule.

"We'll practice Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, then I'll give them Friday and Monday off," Teixeira said.

The girls then play three in a row, hosting Ripon on Tuesday, April 21, making up their rained out game with Riverbank on Wednesday, April 22 and going to Ripon Christian on Thursday, April 23. The JV girls will play the Tuesday, April 21 game against Ripon.

Teixeira said the varsity girls are excited about leading the league and look for a solid effort every time out.

"They are maintaining the enthusiasm and they don't give up," she said.

Having Brooks racking up double digit strikeouts nearly every time out doesn't hurt either.

"You have that (Brooks' strikeouts) and good D, a couple of runs will do it," Teixeira said.