Softball team defeats Long Beach College, raises record to 5-1

The Rio Hondo Women’s Softball team overcame a slow start to defeat Long Beach College on February 5.

On a clear and chilly Wednesday afternoon, the women’s softball team hosted Long Beach Community College in their third preseason game. The schools new and totally remolded Softball field represents a fresh new start to the upcoming season and provides a great atmosphere in which the team can take advantage of.

Knowing that Long Beach has always been a strong team, Head Coach Bianca Urquidi knew she had to prepare her team in the best way possible. Entering her eighth year of coaching here at Rio Hondo, Coach Urquidi is coming off her best season last year where the team managed to earn a 21-14-1 record. This situation serves as nothing new to Coach Urquidi as she has been in games like these countless of times before.

This year’s team is very promising and offers many of the same components as last year’s team. Coach Urquidi also stated that the team has improved offensively and defensively by strengthening their pitching. She is very confident and eager to see what the season has to offer and how well her team meshes together.

Despite the team being down one run the majority of the game, they were able to make up for their lack of offense with their steady defense. Lead by pitcher, Jacquelyn Valdez, the defense was able to hold their ground for the rest of the game after allowing one run in the first inning. Although Long Beach was able to get several hits, the defense’s determined composure closed out each inning as they did not allow anymore opposing runners to reach home plate.

It wasn’t until the sixth inning where Rio Hondo’s offense was finally able to execute. After Valdez and pinch hitter, Monica Gomez, were each able to get on base with base hits, it was third base, Ariana Duran, who rose to the occasion. With runners on first and second, Duran stepped up to the plate and hammered the ball to outfield which brought both Valdez and Gomez home to make it a 2-1 lead.

The sixth inning was soon brought to an end and all the team had left to do was to close Long Beach out in the last inning. Rio Hondo’s defense ultimately decided the game and with much confidence, shut down the Long Beach offense in the closing stages. Upon mercy rule, the team won with a final score of 2-1 making their record 5-1.

Coach Urquidi was very pleased with the team’s win that afternoon and was happy that her team fought hard and made many crucial defense plays.