Mesa blasts rival Eagles

More experienced Mustangs score in every inning on way to big win over cross-town rival.

April 26, 2011|By Matt Szabo,
(Scott Smeltzer )

COSTA MESA — Estancia High assistant softball coach Marcus Franco took a few steps toward the outfield, teasing Costa Mesa High senior center fielder Nikki Lether.

Lether flashed the leather, making back-to-back nice catches in the third inning of Tuesday's Orange Coast League game. Franco, the head coach at Costa Mesa in 2008 and 2009, asked Lether if that was the same center fielder who couldn't catch a fly ball four years ago.

Franco helped build up the Mustangs' edge in softball experience over the Eagles. Costa Mesa used that experience to frustrate its former coach all game.

The Mustangs scored at least once in every inning as they pummeled their cross-town rivals, 16-4, at Estancia High.

"We played amazing today," Costa Mesa Coach Nichole Maddox said. "We were defensively sound, offensively sound. We played well as a team today."

The Mustangs (5-12, 3-2 in league) find themselves in a familiar place after the first half of league, in a three-way tie for second place with Godinez and Laguna Beach. Costa Mesa has finished second in the league the last two years to Calvary Chapel, which is again in first place.


Estancia (4-16, 1-4) didn't really make the Mustangs earn the win Tuesday. Mesa was already ahead, 6-0, in the third inning before it collected its first hit. The Mustangs took advantage of six Estancia errors and also walked 11 times.

Costa Mesa played better defensively, committing just two errors.

"Defense is so key," said Mustangs senior second baseman Sami Feinstein, another four-year varsity starter who swooped over in the second inning to pick a runner off first base. "Yeah, when you're up to bat you have to get the job done and play defense. But if you can't play defense, then you can't win the game either. I think our defense today was really solid. It had to do with us staying mentally focused."

Senior Tamy Cerrato got her second win in two days for Mesa. She pitched the complete game, giving up three earned runs on 10 hits. She struck out three and walked four.

"I just really wanted to win," Cerrato said. "I want to go into CIF with a good record. I want us to try to get first or second place."

Cerrato (4-8) started the year as the Mustangs' No. 2 starter. Now, she's their workhorse.

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