Petaluma High's T-Girl softball team had to struggle a bit, but still managed a 9-2 win over Analy in the championship game of the Sonoma County League Tournament.
The tournament, based on the format of the traditional boys season-ending affair played annually at Arnold Field in Sonoma, pairs the top four teams in a single-elimination affair played this year at Petaluma.
In semifinal games, Petaluma beat Piner, 13-0, while Analy defeated Sonoma Valley, 4-1.
The final score of the tournament title game was a bit deceptive. Petaluma jumped out to a 6-0 lead, scoring three runs in the first two innings, but Analy shut the T-Girls down until they gained a little breathing room with three insurance runs in the sixth inning.
Analy had 10 hits off Petaluma pitching ace Dana Thomsen, but the senior made the big pitches when they had to be made, and her defense made the glove plays when thy had to be made to keep the Lady Tigers away from the plate except for a two-run rally in the fifth inning.
Petaluma began as if it would be a short game. Brie Gerhardt walked to start the T-Girl offensive, went all the way to third on a sacrifice bunt by Thomsen and scored on Katie Bisges' single to right. After a single by Miranda Swanson, back in business after setting out a few games following a baseball to the head that occurred in a practice session, Gina Barnacle slammed a long double to deep left field to chase home two more runs.
The belting continued in the second, with Taylor Kerrigan, Cassie Baddeley (bunt), Gerhardt and Thomsen all contributing hits to another three-run rally.
Analy, grumbling, but not scoring through the first four innings, strung together five straight singles after two were out in the fifth inning for two runs, but Thomsen left the bases loaded with a big third-out strikeout.
The Lady Tigers continued threatening in the sixth, but Petaluma quelled a would-be rally when Kerrigan, in right field, grabbed a fly, fired to second baseman Joelle Krist, who repeated the throw to catcher Swanson to nail a runner trying to score from third following the catch.
Just to make sure, Petaluma tacked on three more runs in the last of the sixth.
Gerhardt, Barnacle and Thomsen each had two hits in Petaluma's 11-hit attack.
The win sends the T-Girls into the North Coast Section Division II playoffs with a 24-1 record. The wins have all come in a row. Petaluma has not lost since dropping its first game of the season, 2-0, to Pinole Valley. Included in the 24-game winning streak was a perfect 12 wins in Sonoma County League play and now two more in the league tournament.