GLENDALE — Glendale Community College’s softball team received production throughout its lineup Thursday against L.A. Mission College.
The Vaqueros hammered out 13 hits, had two home runs, including a grand slam, and eight of nine starters collected hits — and that all came in just four innings.
It took two innings for the Glendale college offense to get rolling, but once it did, runs started coming in bunches. The Vaqueros used two big innings to knock off the Eagles, 11-2, in a Western State Conference Blue Division contest that was halted in the fifth inning at the Glendale Sports Complex.
Along with the hit production from the eight starters, all nine Vaqueros who started the game reached base.
“That says it all right there,” said Glendale college Coach Sal Pizzo, whose team improved to 8-9 and 2-2 in conference. “When you can get production like that throughout the lineup, then you’re going to be successful. I felt we hit the ball really well today and the girls played well in the field.”
Glendale also benefited from a fine showing from the bottom of its order. The Vaqueros’ No. 7, 8 and 9 batters combined to go five for eight with five runs scored.
Giving her team a wealth of production from the bottom spot in the order was sophomore right fielder Kelsie Ange, who was two for two with a three-run home run, three runs batted in and two runs scored.
“At the ninth spot I just look at myself as the second leadoff hitter and it’s my job to get things going from the bottom of the order,” Ange said. “People might not expect a good hitter in that position, so I hope I’m a big surprise sometimes.
“But we have a lot of girls who can hit on this team, so we have talent throughout the order.”
In the eighth position in the order, sophomore third baseman Ashley Suarez was two for three with two runs scored and freshman designated player Cassidy Clark had a hit and scored a run in the No. 7 spot.
Although the Vaqueros threatened in the first two innings, they couldn’t score any runs against Mission (5-12, 0-4) starting pitcher Jazmin Torres. Glendale had a runner on in the first inning with one out, but she was erased by a double play. The Vaqueros also had a runner in scoring position in the second with one out, but Torres induces a lineout and a groundout to end the threat.
Glendale college freshman pitcher Myrna Gonzalez kept the Eagles in check throughout the first four innings, allowing just one hit. However, she faltered a bit in the fifth, surrendering two runs on two hits.
But by that time, the Vaqueros had already built up a sizable lead.
“I was getting concerned in those first two innings when we didn’t score,” said Pizzo, whose team will play 14 of its next 15 games on the road. “But they were able to put two big innings together and come up with some big hits. We always say hitting is contagious and I think that was the case with us today.”
The run production began for the Vaqueros in the third inning. Singles by Suarez and Ange, run-scoring singles by freshman left fielder Ari Rea (two for three with a walk and a run scored) and sophomore first baseman Cassandra Soto (two for three with a grand slam and five RBI) and a double by freshman shortstop Jocelyn Zavala (two for three with one run scored) helped the Vaqueros score four runs.
Glendale college added to its lead and took an 11-0 advantage with seven runs in the fourth inning. In the frame, the Vaqueros brought 11 players to the plate and were paced by Soto’s inside-the-park grand slam and a three-run inside-the-park homer by Ange.
“I struggled last game, so it felt nice to get back hitting today,” Ange said.