Petaluma High's softball T-Girls began their second season in successful fashion Wednesday afternoon, defeating San Lorenzo's Lady Rebels, 7-0, in the first round of the North Coast Section Division 2 playoffs.
The win advances the T-Girls into a second round game at home against Livermore Friday afternoon with first pitch at 4 p.m. Livermore shocked Rancho Cotate, 10-0, in its first-round game. It brings a 13-11 record into its game against the 25-1 Lady Trojans, but as Rancho Cotate found out Wednesday, every playoff team is dangerous.
"They play in a very tough league," Petaluma coach Kurt Jastrow pointed out. "They face top-notch pitching in almost every game."
The story of the Sonoma County League champion T-Girls home-diamond win over San Lorenzo is simply told — Petaluma was the better team.
Better began, as it has much of the season, in the pitcher's circle with Dana Thomsen controlling, and at times dominating, the Lady Rebels. San Lorenzo had just four hits off the Petaluma senior, who set 15 Lady Rebels down on strikes. As usual, her control was impeccable. She didn't walk a batter, and was ahead of most hitters from the first pitch on.
Thomsen started the game by striking out the first two San Lorenzo batters on six pitches. Her controlled faltered a bit against No. 3 batter Brenna Lopez, who managed to take two balls before becoming the pitcher's third straight strikeout. In one stretch from the fourth through six innings, Thomsen struck out seven straight.
San Lorenzo pitcher Lopez appeared to have some movement on her throws, but the T-Girls roughed her up for 11 hits and had runners on base in every inning.
After leaving the bases loaded without scoring in the first, Petaluma spun the merry-go-round for four runs in the second inning, with six consecutive T-Girls reaching base. Katie Bisges had the big hit in the inning, whistling a double down the right field line to score two runs.
Although Thomsen didn't need the policy, Petaluma purchased three runs of insurance in the sixth inning, using hits by Nicole Wiecks, Taylor Kerrigan, Brie Gerhardt and Meghan DeCoite as currency. A dropped ball in the outfield contribute to the rally.
"We played a pretty good game," said Jastrow. "Dana was lights out. There were a couple of innings when they could have gotten back in the game, but Dana came up with big outs."
Gerhardt had two hits for Petaluma, scored twice and drove in a run. Thomsen also had two hits, scored a run and knocked in a run. Bisges, in addition to her big two-run double in the second inning, drove home a run in the T-Girls' sixth-inning rally with a sacrifice fly. DeCoite had a pair of singles and Kerrigan reached base three straight times on two hits and a walk, and scored three runs.