COD Softball snags walk off win over the Eagles, 13-12

COD Softball snags walk off win over the Eagles, 13-12

COD (4-8; 1-4) grabbed their first Conference win of 2018 in style, with a walk-off spectacular that left the home crowd cheering and the visiting team stunned, as the Roadrunners knocked off the Mt. San Jacinto Eagles (8-11; 0-4), 13-12. 

The Eagles got onto the score board first, plating a run in the top of the first, but Desert would take the lead in the bottom half of the frame. Freshman left fielder and leadoff hitter Nalacia Nelson (Beaumont H.S.) would reach first on a hit-by-pitch to start off the game and freshman Tatiana Martinez second baseman (Thermal Coachella Valley) followed that up with a double to right. After a ground out, both Nelson and Martinez would scamper home on a bases clearing double to left by freshman center fielder Vanessa Madera (Thermal Coachella Valley), to give the Roadrunners an early 2-1 lead.

Mt. San Jacinto would tie the game at 2-2 with a run in the top of the second inning, but Desert would add four more runs in the bottom half of the second to give the home side a commanding, 6-2 lead. After a lead off ground out, freshman first baseman Kaitlin Manning (Palm Desert Xavier Prep) clobbered an infield single to the Eagles short stop, then a pop out to the catcher started the hit parade. With two outs, Nelson doubled to center to score Manning, followed up by a single to right by Martinez, which scored Nelson and then sophomore short stop Jada Toland (Indio Shadow Hills) punished a double to center field, scoring Martinez. Madrea would hit an infield single and sophomore right fielder Rebecca Alford (Thermal Coachella Valley) would reach on an error by the Eagles third baseman, scoring Toland.

Desert would expand their lead in the bottom of the third, scoring five more runs, making the score 11-2. Sophomore third baseman Saki Hirata (Tokushima (Japan) Joto) would lead off the bottom of the third inning reaching first base on a hit-by-pitch and was lifted for a pinch runner, freshman Annette Ruvalcaba (Palm Desert H.S.). Manning would single to center and after a fly out to right field, Nelson would load the bases with one out on another hit-by-pitch. By this time the Mt. San Jacinto coach had seen enough and made a call to the bullpen, chasing the starting pitcher with the bases loaded.

Martinez would reach base on a fielder's choice and Ruvalcaba slid home as the pitcher sailed her put out attempt about 5 feet to the right of the catcher. After a strikeout, Madera would bring home two more runs on a single to center and Alford would clear the bases on a double, but on the attempt to turn her double into a triple, she was gunned down by the right fielder on a tag at third base.

In the top of the fourth, Desert changed pitchers and the Eagles jumped all over her, scoring two runs in the fourth and four more runs in the fifth, making the score 11-8.

Desert would get a run back in the bottom of the fifth, when freshman Valerie Reyes (Indio H.S.) came into pinch run for freshman designated player Monique Zaragoza (Indio H.S.) and after stealing second base, ended up scoring on single to right by Toland, giving the Roadrunners a 12-8 lead.

The Eagles would not relent, scoring two more in the sixth and tying the game at 12-12 in the top of the seventh with two more runs.

In the bottom of the seventh, Nelson crushed a one out double to left-center and moved to third base on an infield ground out, scampering home on a single to center by Toland.

Madera had a huge day at the plate, going 4 for 4 with 4 runs batted in and a run scored and Toland was equally impressive, going 3 for 5 with 3 RBI's and a run scored in the win. Martinez went 2 for 5 with 3 runs scored and Nelson went 2 for 3 with 4 runs scored. Manning went 2 for 4 with 2 runs scored and Alford went 1 for 4 with 2 RBI's.

Next home game for College of the Desert Softball will be Saturday, March 10th at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., where they will host a double header with the Los Angeles Valley Monarchs. Hope to see you there.

Photo by Michael Leone Photography (
Information, Photos & Story provided by COD Sports Information.