The Long Beach City College softball team hit the road for their final contest of the regular season as they faced off against the EC-Compton Center Tartars in South Coast Conference (SCC) – South action in hopes of earning second place. The Vikings struck first in the top of the second inning and never looked back as they hauled in a 3-0 victory.
Freshman starting pitcher Alissa Cienfuegos (Carson, CA) entered the circle for her 19th start of the season and was outright dominant once again. She allowed just three hits and fanned a pair of batters in five innings of action.
The Viking struck first in the top of the second inning after freshman center fielder Cynthia Ruiz (Long Beach, CA) laid down a bunt, scoring freshman pinch runner Lauren Blevins (Downey, CA) due to obstruction to take a 1-0 lead.
Ruiz expanded the Vikings' lead to 2-0 in the top of the fourth inning by driving in freshman first baseman Julia Juarez (Long Beach, CA) on a suicide squeeze.
Cienfuegos handed off the pitching duties to freshman closer Vanessa Montanez (Lakewood, CA) in the bottom of the fifth inning and she was lights out. She began her outing by fanning two consecutive batters and forcing a groundout to sophomore third baseman Denise Flores (Carson, CA) to keep the score at 2-0.
Cienfuegos tacked on an insurance run in the top of the sixth inning by lofting a sacrifice fly out to left field, scoring freshman shortstop Amanda McCalip (Bellflower, CA) who reached base via triple. The run pushed the score to 3-0.
From then, it was the Montanez show on the rubber. She cruised through the following two innings by recording three more strikeouts while not allowing a single hit en route to a 3-0 win.
Montanez earned her fourth save of the season and pushed her strikeout total to 65. Her numbers are remarkable on the year. In just 74.2 innings pitched, she has managed to earn a 6.17 strikeouts-per-inning mark and hold a lowly ERA of 2.16. Both marks are team-bests.
Cienfuegos (10-9) earned her 10th victory of the season in her 19th start. She allowed just three hits and no runs.
Ruiz picked up two RBI on the day after going 1-for-2 at the dish. Juarez added two hits and scored one run as well.
The Vikings finished second in the SCC-South and look to compete in a playoff game. They finished season with an overall record of 23-17 and an 8-4 conference mark. Stay tuned to www.lbccvikings.com for further information.