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Camarillo Has a Ball in Upset, 1-0

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Forgive Cindy Ball of Camarillo High for not listening to her father on Thursday. But the pitch was just too good to pass up.

“He hates me because I love that first pitch,” she said.

Ball jumped on the first pitch with the bases loaded and none out in the top of the ninth inning, ripping a line drive to center field that scored Jill Borchard and lifted Camarillo over Simi Valley, 1-0, in a Marmonte League softball game at Rancho Santa Susana Park.

For added drama, Ball, a junior right-hander, surrendered two singles in the bottom of the ninth, allowing the potential tying and winning runs to reach scoring position with one out. But after walking Cindy Gray to load the bases with two out, Ball struck out Jill Clarkson.

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The last two Simi Valley batters looked at 11 pitches without swinging the bat.

“Finally,” sighed Ball, who like the rest of Scorpions has endured a lackluster season. “We finally played like a team today.”

The Scorpions (6-5, 4-2), who were ranked No. 1 in the region by The Times in the preseason before falling out two weeks later, showed signs they could still be the team to beat in the league.

Ball (4-2), a premier pitcher who has been splitting time with freshman Kathrine Nevard, pitched like an experienced ace against Simi Valley (11-3, 4-2), ranked No. 1 by The Times. She allowed four hits, striking out eight and walking three.

Ball, who retired 13 batters in order in the middle innings, allowed one hit through seven--Dawn Carifi’s high chopper that bounced off the glove of third baseman Jennifer Byrne in the third.

Borchard walked to open the ninth. Kortney Edge singled to left and Jessica Mendoza bunted for a hit to load the bases for Ball.


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