The greedy Petaluma High School T-Girls refused to share the Sonoma County League softball championship, claiming the title for itself Thursday afternoon with a 12-2, 6-inning win over Piner’s Lady Prospectors.
The victory closed the book on the regular season for Petaluma at 16-5 overall and 11-1 in league.
It also brought to an end the first regular season for Petaluma High School assistant coach Connie Benavidez, brought in to help by head coach Kurt Jastrow after she served nine years as head coach at El Molino High School.
“This has been an amazing year, I love it here,” she said. “This team jelled together very well. The seniors worked with the younger players, and they all worked together. It has been fun.”
It certainly was fun for the T-Girls against Piner as they backed strong pitching from freshman Rachael Bles with ball-proof defense.
The game lasted less than six innings, halted by the 10-run rule with Petaluma still batting in the bottom of the sixth.
During her five innings on the mound, Bles allowed just four hits. Two of those came in the first inning, when Piner scored on a double by Mia Meisse followed by an RBI single from Jonelle Bolduc.
After that, Bles and the Petaluma defense took over.
In the top of the sixth, with Petaluma already in control with a 6-1 lead, Piner pitcher Hana Suppus dropped a home run over the center-field fence. That brought Mandi O’Keefe into the circle, and she finished things out in 1-2-3 fashion.
Petaluma, as it has done all season, hit from top-to-bottom of its order and brought several players off the bench to help out.
O’Keefe and Kaleigh Weiand each had two hits and Maddie King, Bles, Chandler Mevis, Mia Pariani, Indya Smith, Emma Weiand and Grace Ghirardelli all helped with hits.
Not that the T-Girls needed any help, but Piner handed them two runs on errors in the second. Three runs were much more legitimate in the third on three hits, one of them a soaring drive over the right-field fence by Kaleigh Weiand. A sixth run scored in the fifth to make it a still reasonable 6-1 ballgame.
Reasonable turned rout in the Petaluma sixth when the T-Girls sent nine hitters to the plate and they rapped five hits, including flying triples from O’Keefe and Logan Pomi.
There was still only one out when the T-Girls went in front by 10 and the umpires sent everyone home for supper.