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Long Beach City College

Long Beach City College

Preview: Long Beach Softball Earns Second-Straight Playoff Appearance

Preview: Long Beach Softball Earns Second-Straight Playoff Appearance

After placing second in a highly competitive South Coast Conference (SCC) – South with an overall record of 23-17 and 8-4 conference mark, the Vikings have reached playoffs for the second-consecutive season and will face off against a familiar foe in the Santiago Canyon College Hawks of the Orange Empire Conference.

The three-game series will begin on Friday, May 5th on the road for a doubleheader starting at 12 noon. The series will continue on Saturday, May 6th at 2 p.m., if necessary. It will be $12 for admission and $8 for students, staff, and faculty with a valid ID. Click here for the address to Santiago Canyon College.

The Vikings and the Hawks faced off in early March in a heated, two-game series. The Vikings dropped the first game of the series, 2-1, but rallied back to haul in the win in the second game by the final score of 2-1 in extra innings. 

Long Beach boast a strong offensive unit as they have earned a combined .327 batting average to go along with a .372 on-base percentage and a .437 slugging percentage.

Behind the majority of the mayhem is freshman utility player Alissa Cienfuegos (Carson, CA). Offensively, she posted impressive numbers with a .427 batting average to go along with a massive .806 slugging percentage. She has blasted eight home runs and 19 doubles to highlight a team-pacing 53 hits en route to 41 RBI and 20 runs scored. She also contributed significantly on the pitching front by making 19 starts and earning a 10-9 record to go along with a 2.74 ERA. She is seven punch outs away from reaching the century mark and averages 5.53 strikeouts-per-seven innings.

Sophomore second baseman Daisy Velasquez (Bellflower, CA) has held it down for the Vikings throughout the entire season by starting in every game she has played. She paces the team with a monster .433 batting average to go along with 52 hits and a .485 on-base percentage. The bulk of her damage has come from the top two sports in the batting order for the majority of the season. She has reached base safely in 16 of her last 18 games.

Sophomore third baseman Denise Flores (Carson, CA) has had an excellent inaugural season for the Vikings by posting a .336 batting average and 16 RBI, while freshman center fielder Cynthia Ruiz (Long Beach, CA) has come on strong in the latter half of the year with a .365 batting average with 23 hits and 16 runs scored.

Freshman pitcher Vanessa Montanez (Long Beach, CA) has been the anchor in the bullpen throughout the season – especially in most recent contest. She has earned five saves (T-2nd best in the state) on the season and has allowed a mere run in her past five appearances. She has recorded 20 strikeouts throughout that timespan as well. Sophomore southpaw Anissa Hamilton (Downey, CA) has impressed throughout the year by earning an overall record of 7-3 and has painted corners for 52 punch outs. She owns a team-best 6.17 strikeouts-per-inning in just 59 innings pitched. Furthermore, she has chucked three complete games.

Santiago Canyon holds a 14-3-1 record at home to go along with an overall mark of 29-10-1.

Sophomore Emili Olague paces the team on the offensive end with a .492 batting average and a strong .773 slugging percentage. She has blasted eight round trippers en route to 52 RBI. Sophomore Manoa Weijgertse follows with 46 RBI and a .474 batting average.

Freshman Kristen Piazza has chucked the majority of the innings for the Hawks by compiling 143.1 innings pitched en route to a 17-6 record. She has earned six saves and 11 complete games. Additionally, she pitched both games against the Vikings this season and went 1-1.