LA CANADA — In some ways, the Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy and Flintridge Prep softball teams are similar.
That proved to be evident when the teams met Wednesday afternoon in a nonleague contest at Flintridge Prep.
The Tologs and Rebels both possess strong lineups. However, both teams are still trying to shore up their respective pitching staffs and defense.
Flintridge Sacred Heart showed some more pop Wednesday, as it finished with 11 hits en route to a 21-11 win in a contest called after five innings because of the 10-run mercy rule.
Flintirdge Sacred Heart and Flintridge Prep each share a common goal of trying to make the playoffs in May. Between now and then, Flintridge Sacred Heart Coach Kirk Nishiyama and Flintridge Prep Coach Julie Mejia are trying to sort things out.
“Our offense certainly hasn’t been an issue,” said Nishiyama, who got two hits apiece from Sumner Hanula and Olivia Fitzpatrick to improve to 3-4-1 with Mission League looming. “We just have to do a better job of limiting our defensive lapses and improving our pitching.
“We hope to at least be .500 in league, but it’s going to come down to pitching for that to happen.”
Mejia, whose team dropped to 1-5, shared a similar view regarding the Rebels.
“We are a very young team,” said Mejia, who received three hits from Drew Montgomery. “We are still trying to figure things out and we will.
“For us, we have to get better on defense and get better at finishing plays. I think we have the type of team that can compete [in the Prep League]. We have to minimize our errors and learn not to make the same mistakes twice.”
The Tologs and Rebels each scored twice in the first inning. Flintridge Sacred Heart then scored four runs in the second to take a 6-2 advantage. Fitzpatrick had a two-run double to give the Tologs a 4-2 lead.
Flintridge Prep bounced back with three runs in the bottom of the second, capped by Ashley Kim scoring on a wild pitch to cut the deficit to 6-5.
Flintridge Sacred Heart then pushed across six runs in the third to make it 12-5. Four errors and four wild pitches paved the way for the Tologs to enjoy their big inning, which featured a run-scoring single by Hanula to make it 12-6.
The Tologs scored nine runs in the fourth to pad their advantage to 21-5. Hanula hit a towering three-run home run to center field to make it 18-5.
Flintridge Sacred Heart finished with five hits in the inning.
“We are getting some big hits from people like Sumner and Olivia, who is just a freshman,” Nishiyama said. “Olivia is doing quite well, and she’s gotten confidence at the plate.”
Flintridge Prep battled until the end, scoring four runs in the fifth with two outs and nobody on base.
The Rebels batted around and received a run-scoring single by Kim to make it 21-10. A fielding error by the first baseman made it 21-11.
Kim and Jenna Gapler finished with two hits apiece for Flintridge Prep.
Hanula, Sophia Coffey and Lali Ortiz scored three runs each for Flintridge Sacred Heart.