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Newport Harbor’s Eliana Gottlieb is Wave League MVP in softball

Newport’s Eliana Gottlieb makes contact for a hit during Battle of the Bay girls softball game again
Newport Harbor’s Eliana Gottlieb, seen hitting against Corona del Mar on April 2, was named the MVP of the Wave League for the 2019 season.
(Don Leach / Staff Photographer)

Newport Harbor High sophomore center fielder Eliana Gottlieb earned the Wave League MVP award in softball after leading the Sailors to their first league title.

Gottlieb hit .569 with 28 runs scored and 25 runs batted in. She also brought the power with eight doubles, four home runs and a triple.

Junior Clare Austin took home Wave League Pitcher of the Year honors. Austin posted an earned-run average of 2.09 over 80 1/3 innings. She struck out 45 against just 12 walks.

Sophomore shortstop Lindsey Blanchfield, sophomore catcher Kendall Kelly and senior second baseman Leah Freeman also earned first-team selections for the Sailors.

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Blanchfield hit .448 with 31 runs scored, 14 RBIs and three doubles. She also had a team-high 10 stolen bases.

Kelly had a .395 batting average with 26 RBIs and 17 runs scored. She had seven doubles and two home runs.

Freeman, a former Daily Pilot Dream Team Player of the Year as a freshman, hit .375 with 22 runs scored, 20 RBIs, six doubles and one triple.

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Newport Harbor went 18-10 overall and 8-1 in the league. The Sailors also defeated visiting Ocean View in the first round of the CIF Southern Section Division 5 playoffs, before bowing out against La Cañada Flintridge Sacred Heart.

Fountain Valley had sophomore pitcher CJ Garcia and sophomore outfielder Brooke Pace named to the first team.

Garcia, who also played shortstop, hit .453 with 28 runs scored and 18 RBIs. She slugged nine doubles, three home runs and two triples.

Pace provided a .366 batting average with 21 runs scored and 15 RBIs. She had five doubles and a triple.

Fountain Valley went 11-17-1 overall and 6-3 in the league, finishing in second place. The Barons lost to San Juan Hills in the first round of the Division 3 playoffs.

Corona del Mar had three players selected to the first team in senior center fielder Amerys Barshtak, freshman shortstop Sydney Walls and freshman first baseman Makena Tomlinson.

Barshtak led the Sea Kings in batting with a .519 average. She scored 36 runs to go with 18 RBIs, six doubles, one triple and one home run.

Walls hit .342 with 21 runs scored and nine RBIs. She added four doubles and one triple.

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Tomlinson was the run-producer in the Sea Kings’ batting order. She hit .410 with 35 RBIs, backed by a total of eight doubles and seven home runs.

CdM went 13-13 overall and 3-6 in the league. The Sea Kings finished in third place and did not qualify for the Division 6 playoffs.

Senior pitcher Emily Thomas received a first-team selection from Laguna Beach.

Thomas hit .302 while also pitching the bulk of the innings for the Breakers, who went 6-13 overall and 1-8 in the league. The fourth-place Breakers did not reach the Division 7 playoffs.

Newport Harbor freshman pitcher McKayla Cotton received second-team honors.

The Barons had senior second baseman Samantha Araiza, sophomore third baseman Samara Ortega and senior first baseman Taylor Staffa earn second-team honors.

CdM sophomore catcher Trasara Alexander and junior pitcher Sophia Skerik were named to the second team.

The Breakers had senior catcher Lola Fisher and junior utility player Madilyn Garwal named to the second team.

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