The La Cañada High softball team took a three-run lead into the bottom of the sixth inning in the finals of the San Dimas Tournament Saturday, but it almost wasn't enough as a two-run homer in the bottom of the sixth brought San Dimas within a run before the Spartans ultimately triumphed, 3-2.
Lauren Cox settled down after giving up the home run, retiring the next six batters she faced to clinch the tournament title after La Cañada was eliminated in the semifinals last year.
“It's always great to go to a tournament and win the tournament, but more importantly is the way we're getting it done,” La Cañada Coach KC Mathews said. “We know we have the pitching performance from Lauren, she has been masterful in the circle in this tournament.”
Cox went the distance again for the Spartans (4-0) striking out a season-high 14 batters while giving up two walks and three hits. She was named the tournament's most valuable player after recording 46 strikeouts in the four-game tournament.
Catherine Horner and Annie Monroe were both named to the all-tournament team for the Spartans.
Horner gave La Cañada a 1-0 edge in the fourth inning when she scored on a triple from Alyssa Stolmack, who later increased the lead to 2-0 when she scored on a passed ball in the frame.
Monroe scored the Spartans’ third and final run in the top of the sixth on a San Dimas error.
“Our bats have been right on,” Mathews said. “In four games, we struck out a total of three times, that says a lot about how the girls are hitting. Up and down the lineup we are hitting the ball.”
Cox was dominant for the Spartans in Friday’s semifinal, tossing a no-hitter with 12 strikeouts in an 8-0 win over Glendora. Her bid for a perfect game was broken up by a La Cañada error.
Horner led La Cañada’s offense, going three for three with doubles and three runs batted in. Selina Mohr went two for three with a run scored and stolen base for the Spartans.