GLENDALE — For the Glendale Little League Junior Softball All-Star team to capture the District 16 championship, manager Will Thayer said it will need to get its offense back on track.
With a golden opportunity to nab the crown in the tournament’s championship contest Wednesday night at Scholl Canyon Ball Fields, Glendale couldn’t get the big hits when needed. It led to a 6-3 defeat against Tujunga and the two teams will meet in the if-necessary title contest at 7 p.m. at Scholl with the winner advancing to the Section 2 Tournament.
“Not a lot of balls fell our way tonight,” said Thayer, whose team began the tournament Tuesday with a 15-9 win against Tujunga at Scholl. “We also had a couple of base-running blunders, the type we don’t have that often.
“We have to get back to putting the balls in play and being able to string together some hits. Tujunga deserved to win and we’ll come back [Thursday].”
Tujunga regrouped from the defeat Tuesday and led throughout Wednesday.
Tujunga jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Alyssa Arroyo and Ashley Wright each scored on wild pitches. Glendale, representing Crescenta Valley, Foothill and Vaquero Little League, trimmed the deficit in half in the bottom of the first on an error.
Glendale appeared in position to take the lead in the second. With runners on first and second and one out, Tujunga second baseman Grace Pazos snared a bloop hit by Esme Piedra and turned it into a double play.
Tiffany Corrales gave Tujunga a 3-1 advantage with a run-scoring single in the third. Tujunga made it 4-1 in the fourth on an error.
Glendale mounted a comeback attempt in the sixth. Sammy Serrano had a run-scoring triple and scored on an error to help Glendale pull to within 4-3 with one out. Bella Urena then doubled before Tujunga quashed the rally.
A two-run single in the seventh by Kacee Howser capped the scoring.
“We minimized our errors after making three or four Tuesday,” Tujunga Manager Paul Neuenswander said. “We cut back on our base-running mistakes.”
Allison Alzate of Glendale said her team will look to bounce back Thursday.
“We feel good about ourselves,” Alzate said. “We just have to keep our heads up and see what happens.
“We were a little nervous going into the game. We are going to have to play harder.”
Glendale finished with seven hits, including two from Urena.
The District 16 champion will meet the District 51 representative in an opening-round contest of the Section 2 Tournament at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at Scholl. The Section 2 title game will take place July 18 and an if-necessary contest would be held July 19.
Follow Charles Rich on Twitter: @TCNCharlesRich .