Second in Salt River Tournament
The Salt River High School Lady Eagles softball team went 5-1 in the annual Salt River Softball Tournament. Their loss came in the championship game on Saturday, March 23. The Lady Eagles, a No. 2 seed, fell to Coolidge, a Division III team that leads their conference overall.
Gila Bend and San Carlos
Taking advantage of fundamental errors, the Lady Eagles topped both Gila Bend and San Carlos on Friday, March 22. Both games were called early due to the 10-run rule. Right-handed pitcher Marissa Flores pitched a no-hitter against San Carlos, their only run coming off of errors. Flores finished with eight strikeouts in the San Carlos game and three versus Gila Bend. Other stats include No. 2 Samantha Hardy going 3-for-3 against San Carlos, while most of the Lady Eagles lineup went 3-for-4. No. 13 Enicia Flores, No. 7 Nikki Kuakahi and No. 16 Marissa Flores each scored a pair of RBIs.
Arizona Lutheran Academy
The Lady Eagles defeated Arizona Lutheran 9-5. No. 7 Nikki [last name] hit two home runs and had three RBIs. No. 14 Rachel Cooper went 3-for-4.
In the semifinal, the Lady Eagles were down by 4 at the bottom of the sixth inning. With two down and bases loaded, No. 7 Nikki Kuakahi hit an inside-the-park grand slam to tie the game. Following the grand slam, a base hit by No. 10 Kishan Cooper, making her the winning run. Next up, No. 13 Enicia Flores went deep, driving in the winning run.
Championship Against Coolidge
The high-powered pitching by right-hander Tiffanie Thompson proved to be the key element in Coolidge’s victory over the Lady Eagles; she had 10 strikeouts and came into the game with a 1.17 ERA for the 2013 season thus far. Down by 9, the Lady Eagles began to rally back at the top of the sixth inning, as they had the previous game, but they were able to score only five runs, finishing the game 10-6.
The Lady Eagles pitcher, No. 16 Marissa Flores, finished the game with three strikeouts. No. 14 Rachel Cooper and No. 13 Enicia Flores both went 2-for-3. Marissa Flores also had two RBIs.
Dominating the tournament, the Salt River Lady Eagles looked confident in their lineup and on the field. When asked what their secret to success is, head coach Scott Cooper said, “The girls have established a bond. They come together and have fun when they play the game.” This is evident when the Lady Eagles are on the field; smiling and laughing while playing the game.
Cooper, originally from Oklahoma, is in his first year as the SRHS head coach; last season he was an assistant coach. With more than a decade of coaching softball, he has a passion for the game and doesn’t look to quit anytime soon.
Eagles Baseball 3-1 in Tournament
Salt River High School hosted its annual Baseball/Softball Classic tournament from Thursday March 21, to Saturday March 23. The tournament included 48 teams from all over the state of Arizona, plus several teams outside of the state. It is one of the biggest tournaments held at a high school.
There were two pools in the tournament, the Gold pool and the Silver pool. The Salt River Eagles competed in the Silver pool.
“We are pretty happy with the overall event,” said Brandon Tausher, head coach of the Salt River Eagles baseball team.
The team had three wins and one loss. “The last win was against Ash Fork, who were a playoff team last year, and it was good to get a win off a team that was a top 24—and that was after we were bouncing back on Saturday from a loss,” Tausher said. The one loss put the team as the seventh seed in the tournament, just under the cutoff of the top six seeds playing on for the championship.
Capitalizing on errors and poor pitching, the Eagles defeated the Canyon State Academy Rams with a score of 2-7. Marcus Porter pitched four innings and had four strikeouts. Richie Marez closed the game with three strikeouts. On Saturday the team had a win.
“Right now, we are just trying to find that consistency in the team and what we are trying to get the team to think about: how to prepare, focus and overall be a team during the beginning of the season. The team set some goals for what they want in the future,” explained Tausher.
During a game against the Arizona Charter Academy on March 26 at Salt River High School, the Eagles had freshman pitcher Marcus Porter start. Porter closed the game and had 10 strikeouts. Isaiah Manuel had two RBIs. Isaiah Corrales scored four runs for the team and was able to get on base at every at-bat. Marez went 2-for-4.
Currently the Eagles are in the top 10, with a 7-4 record. An umpire from one of the games came up and complimented the team on how far they have come and what a good job they are doing.