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Lady Eagles take SFL softball title

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It wasn’t easy, but the Del Oro Lady Eagles are this year’s Sierra Foothill League softball champions. Getting hot at the right time of the season, the Lady Eagles captured their final eight SFL games in succession and won 11 of their last 12 contests to emerge as the outright league champ. Thanks to a 4-0 no-hitter win over Oakmont last Wednesday and a grueling 5-3 win over cellar-dwelling Granite Bay on Friday, the Lady Eagles posted a 10-2 SFL mark to eke past second place Woodcreek’s 9-3 record and Rocklin which went 8-4 to finish in third. All three SFL teams will begin play Friday in the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Div. II playoffs that will be held at the Sacramento Softball Complex off of I-80 and Watt Ave. in Sacramento. Del Oro, the No. 1 seed from the SFL, will meet Sacramento High in a 7 p.m. game Friday. Other first round match ups pair Oak Ridge vs. Rocklin, Woodcreek vs. Rosemont, and Ponderosa against McClatchy. Second round action moves to Saturday with the Del Oro-Sacramento winner meeting the Ponderosa-McClatchy victor at 2 p.m. In last week’s action, the Lady Eagles cinched at least a share of the crown earlier in the week as Savannah Pingree fired a no-hitter and freshman Hannah George drove in three runs to highlight a 4-0 blanking of Oakmont. However, on Friday against Granite Bay, the Lady Eagles had some anxious moments in their bid to secure the outright title. After building an early 5-1 lead with runs in each of their first four at-bats, Del Oro saw the Grizzlies score twice in the top of the seventh to trim the margin to a pair of runs before the Lady Eagles squelched the threat and sewed up the title. Annette Merjano swung the big bat for the winners as she was a perfect 3x3 and drove in three runs. Meanwhile, Kayla Wood delivered another key RBI double and also scored a run. George also paired raps with a RBI, while Pingree, Aspen Echelmier and Whitney Smith also collected hits. Pingree gained the mound win by allowing just six hits and one earned run. She fanned 11 and walked two. For Del Oro, 20-6 overall, it was their first SFL softball title since 2002.