Oakdale’s varsity softball team has been busy this preseason. Over the last 10 days the girls have competed in the Saint Mary’s tournament, where they finished 2-2, and bounced back with three straight non-league victories to cap off the flurry of contests.
Oakdale hosted Merced on Tuesday, March 14 and defeated the visiting Bears 3-1. Collecting multiple hits for the Lady Mustangs were Chloe Vierra and Rilyn Cassaretto. Vierra went 2-for-2 with two runs scored and a stolen base. Cassaretto went 2-for-2 with an RBI and a stolen base in the win. Lexi Webb started the game for Oakdale, but took an early exit due to a sore arm, and was replaced by Grace Green in the third. Oakdale trailed 1-0 in the first but did not trail for long as they tied it in the bottom of the first, and took the lead in the bottom of the second 2-1 and tagged on their final run in the fourth.
“We gave up an unearned run in the first. Grace entered in the third and shut them out the rest of the way, behind some great defense,” Coach Larry Loger said.
Two days later the girls hosted Enochs where Oakdale shut out the Modesto team 7-0. Grace Green pitched a complete game, notching 10 strikeouts in the win. Oakdale had ten hits in the win and were led by Chloe Vierra’s three hit day. Lexi Webb’s arm soreness was not a factor and she batted as the team’s designated hitter and went 2-for-2 with a pair of two doubles resulting in two RBI. Oakdale scored four runs in the sixth inning to put things away.
As impressive as the team’s offense has been, Oakdale’s defense has been a standout as well. In the fourth inning, Enochs had a runner on second and one out when shortstop Brittany Bye leaped in the air and came down with the ball to rob Enochs of a run.
“I was just trying to save our pitcher, she worked hard in this game and we wanted to put in the same effort as infielders. Honestly, though, I was surprised when I caught the ball. I honestly was excited because it helped the team,” Bye said.
She also did damage at the plate as she connected on an RBI double in the same inning.
Celebrating her birthday with a hit was Dakota Gray, who had the Lady Mustang fans on their feet when she connected on an infield single where she had a big collision with the Enochs first baseman and was ruled safe.
“I was a little nervous playing today. We struggled in the Saint Mary’s tournament but have turned things around. Today we had a lot of support by the community and that always helps,” Gray said.
On Saturday, the girls went to Patterson and defeated the Tigers 7-2. Providing the offensive power was Christina Robinette as she went 2-for-4 with a monster home run that sailed over the center field wall in the sixth inning.
“I’ve been struggling this season; I’ve been striking out and not getting on base this year. But my girls never gave up on me, they have been encouraging and that gave me the confidence to deliver today,” Robinette said.
Webb pitched a complete game giving up four hits and striking out six. She was backed up by big defensive efforts by third baseman Farrah Gomes, second baseman Shay Trent and her outfield. At the plate Trent went 3-for-4 with a triple and scored three times.
“Lexi pitched a good game against a strong Patterson lineup. Our defense continued to play well,” Loger said of the road win.
Today, Wednesday, March 22 the girls are scheduled to begin Valley Oak League play, hosting Kimball. On Friday the girls are scheduled to take on Weston Ranch on the road. Both games have a 4 p.m. start time.
Oakdale earned a 4-0 road win over Patterson on Saturday. The girls will host Kimball on Wednesday, March 22 in the Valley Oak League opener with game time scheduled for 4 p.m.