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Mustangs hit road

Costa Mesa opens CIF Southern Section Division V playoffs Thursday at San Marino.

May 18, 2010

Nichole Maddox joked that she didn't know what she was getting herself into when she took over the Costa Mesa High softball team.

Maddox held the title of girls' basketball coach in the winter. After a successful first season in which the Mustangs reached the playoffs, it was time to go outdoors and lead a new team.

Maddox coached two sports before, never believing it would happen again. Maddox is happy she's busy again.

Costa Mesa is the lone Newport-Mesa softball program in the playoffs. The Mustangs on Monday learned of their first-round opponent in the CIF Southern Section Division V playoffs.

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Costa Mesa (17-8) plays at San Marino (16-6) Thursday at 3:15 p.m.

Maddox's concern before the release of the playoff pairings was facing a team from a competitive league. The Mustangs' second straight postseason berth won't be easy.

They're on the road, something Maddox wasn't expecting with the Mustangs placing second in the Orange Coast League.

San Marino finished second in the Rio Hondo League to La Cañada (22-4), the No. 2 seed in the playoffs. The Titans played La Cañada tough in three games, winning one and losing the others by a combined three runs.

Senior Kira Mitani will start for the Mustangs. The right-handed pitcher likes her team's chances.

"Take CIF," Mitani said is the goal.

Winning the first game is a good start.

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