Photo credit Bee Picayune - Kevin Keller
Though it wasn't their final game in Beeville or in Cougar Blue, the 2019 CBC Softball Sophomore class played brilliantly on the day dedicated to them as the Cougars swept the Seahawks of Lamar State - Port Arthur 9-3 and 10-9.
The Cougars struck early and often as they flexed their offensive muscles over Lamar State. Vanessa Garces got the action started in the bottom of the first drawing a walk and moving to second on a passed ball. She scored when Emily Michki hit a laser like homerun over the left center field fence. Michki's homerun came after the Seahawks catcher dropped a foul pop up behind the plate to give the Cougar slugger another chance.
Britney Garcia would be the next Cougar across the plate after she drew a walk and then promptly stole second. Garces laid down a perfect sacrifice bunt that led to a throwing error and allowed Garcia to race home from second base to put CBC up, 3-0
The Seahawks would fight back in the top of the third inning scoring two runs off starting pitcher Kristen Gomez. Garces would again be involved in a CBC score when in the bottom of the fourth, she would draw a walk and score on Michki double to left center - nearly the same line as her first inning homer - to push the CBC lead to 4-2. It was in the fifth inning when the Cougars broke the backs of the Seahawks behind a pair of homers, from Madyson Parker and Ashley Soto. Soto's shot was a monster to dead centerfield that was never in question from the time it left the bat. The Cougars would lead 9-2, and make it stick behind a brilliant defensive play by the other Soto, as Kirsten Soto would stop a Seahawk threat by making a diving play to her left and from the ground flip the ball to second for a force out to close out the 9-3 victory.
The second half of the doubleheader was a thrilling back and forth game of domination and comeback. CBC would again strike first, this time in the second inning as Garcia would draw a walk and score on a Devin Parsons double down the left field line. Garces and Ashley Soto would draw back to back walks to load the bases for Michki who drove an outside pitch to right center field to score three CBC runs. Annette Cardenas would top that by hitting another straigh-away centerfield bomb that traveled just over the fence, but far enough to make it a 7-0 lead. Parker and Parsons continued the carnage by getting on board with infield singles and scored on catcher Brianna McKeel's double to right center field to end the damage 8-0.
With the Cougars looking at a run rule win, the Seahawks fought their way back scoring three runs in the third inning chasing CBC starting pitcher Amanda Aguirre and five runs in fourth only two of which were earned, off Gomez who was on in relief. Ashley Soto would take back the score with her second bomb of the day, this time to left center field on another tape measure shot. Once again Lamar State would rally to push across the tieing run across the plate in the top of the seventh inning.
In the bottom of seventh, sophomore Parsons would single past a diving short stop. She would move to second on a spectacular bunt by Garcia. Both runners would advance to scoring position by a sacrifice by Garces, bringing fellow sophomore Ashley Soto to the plate. Lamar State facing the strength of CBC lineup (Ashley Soto, Michki and Cardenas) made the decision to pitch to Soto instead of walking her to create a force at each plate. Soto would make them pay driving the ball off wall in left center field to score Parsons and secure a season sweep of Lamar State - a first in program history.
The Cougars record now stands at 23-20, which ties their program best 23 wins recorded last season. They head on the road this weekend to take on Galveston on Friday and Alvin on Saturday. They currently sit in third in Region XIV South one game ahead of Galveston, thus the weekend's four game set will determine CBC's playoff future.