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SOUTHERN SECTION SOFTBALL PLAYOFFS : Fly Ball Proves Too Much for Tustin to Handle

Tustin High School right fielder Denise Thomas couldn’t come to grips with a two-out fly ball in the bottom of the seventh inning Tuesday, and as a result, Mayfair defeated the Tillers, 1-0, in the second round of the Southern Section 3-A softball playoffs.

The game was scoreless when Mayfair’s Kim Young singled with one out in the seventh and was sacrificed to second by Nicki Kephart. Keri Cobb then hit a fly ball to Thomas, but the ball bounced her glove and Young scored the game-winner.

Thomas, a senior, said she had no excuses for her play. She said it wasn’t the sun and it wasn’t one of the many braids that fell across her face. “It’s just an error,” Thomas said.

Tustin, the second-place team from the Sea View League, ended its season 15-10. Senior Shannon Ellis, who finished the regular season with an 0.61 earned-run average, pitched a three-hitter and struck out five to raise her season total to 171.

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“It was typical softball fashion,” Tustin Coach Sharon Seidenberg said. “We had a couple of opportunities, pretty much routine plays. They just got a runner on, two outs and we made an error.”

Mayfair, which entered the playoffs as a wild-card team, improves to 18-10. Stacy Van Essen pitched a two-hitter for the Monsoons, striking out 11 and walking none. Tustin catcher Christine Garner had the hits, both singles.

“I am very pleased,” Mayfair Coach Jolene Hunt said. “We’ve played with some bad luck, and we’ve played with some good luck this year.”


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