GLENDALE — Another late rally put the Crescenta Valley Junior Softball All-Stars in good position to possibly win the Junior Softball Southern California State Tournament on Friday, but for the second time in two nights, Victorville wouldn't be denied.
Crescenta Valley, the Section 2 champion, fell, 8-5, in eight innings in La Mesa, narrowly missing a chance to advance to the Regional Tournament in Tucson.
"Nobody really gave us a chance to get out of Burbank [in the District 16 Tournament] and we went through Burbank and went through [the Section 2 Tournament in] Canyon Country and got into the winner's bracket here and won a bunch of games," Crescenta Valley Manager Will Thayer said. "Then we lost two close games to a good club.
"It was a game of inches and it just didn't go our way tonight."
Victorville, the Section 8 titlist, which defeated Crescenta Valley, 10-8, on Thursday to force Friday's if-necessary title game after losing to Crescenta Valley, 6-3, earlier in the tournament, scored three runs on three hits and a walk in the top of the eighth inning. All of this came after Crescenta Valley had battled back to tie the game at 5 in the bottom of the sixth.
Whitney Craig, who went two for four with a double and a triple, led off the bottom of the sixth with a triple and scored on a single by Taylor Hill (one for four) to cut Crescenta Valley's deficit to 5-3.
Tiffany Briscoe, who had earlier tied the game at 1 in the bottom of the second inning on a home run, drew an intentional walk and was driven home by a single by Paige Trestrail. An error on a grounder hit Marissa Cornelius tied the game.
"It was back and forth throughout the whole game," Thayer said. "Taylor Hill and Whitney Craig pitched their hearts out, but we gave up a couple of key walks in the beginning of a couple of innings and they were followed up by a couple of hits. Those were the difference makers for us."
Crescenta Valley took its only lead in the third inning, 2-1, on an RBI single by Olivia Thayer.