Calhoun Youth Softball Team Wins State

There’s a new state championship team in Calhoun County.
The Calhoun senior softball team won the state title earlier this week, beating Channelview in Seguin. These 13-16 year old girls are 4-0 overall in this summer’s playoffs. The Calhoun senior team won state back-to-back in 2015 and ’16. Two of the players on that team, Kelsey Tidrick and Lexi Carbajal, now play for UHV. Our Sean Coffey talked with two of these Calhoun state champs. Said Haley Contreras, “It means a lot. It took a lot of time for us to get used to each other. We weren’t used to each other at all. Now we’re all really close and we have fun.” Said Mia Contreras, “I’ve played All-Stars for a few years and we’ve never made it this far. It’s imiportant to me that the girls I’m playing with have a great experience.”
Calhoun senior softball starts plays at regionals in Vidalia, Louisiana Saturday against Mississippi.

Lauren Cortez of East softball has received All-State Academic honors from the Texas Girls Coaches Association.

IRVINE, Calif. – It was a Championship finish for USA Red (World Championship roster) as the team soared to a 10-5 win over Japan in the grand finale of the USA Softball International Cup. This marked the first time since the 2013 Canada Cup that a U.S. team had put 10 runs on the board against Japan and won. For USA Blue (Japan All-Star Series roster), a dramatic, come-from-behind victory over China earned the team a Bronze Medal finish.

Click here for box scores from the USA Softball International Cup

USA Red 10, Japan 5

Click here for a box score

Valerie Arioto (Pleasanton, Calif.) proved why she is one of the most respected hitters in the game as USA Red claimed the USA Softball International Cup title with a 10-5 win over Japan. Arioto went 3-for-3 with each hit a home run, leading the USA Red offense with five RBI and four runs scored.

USA Red got on the board early, striking in their first at-bat with a two out rally. Back-to-back walks to Kirsti Merritt (Lake Panasoffkee, Fla.) and Kasey Cooper (Dothan, Ala.) put two on for Michelle Moultrie (Jacksonville, Fla.), who recorded an infield single to plate Merritt while a throwing error by the Japan defense allowed Cooper to score.

Japan struck back in the top of the second inning to cut USA Red’s lead to one run. After a leadoff walk, a sac bunt moved the runner up a base before a single to left field put runners on the corners. A groundout to Ali Aguilar (Orangevale, Calif.) gave the runner at third enough time to score making the game 2-1, in favor of USA Red.

Arioto led off the bottom of the third with her first home run of the game, a solo shot, over the centerfield fence to pad the USA Red lead to two runs. Delaney Spaulding (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.) followed two batters later with her own solo home run, making it 4-1, USA Red.

The game came within one run in the top of the fourth as Japan plated two after a pair of singles and a walk allowed two runners to cross the plate. Aguilar responded in the bottom of the fourth with the third USA Red home run of the game, putting USA Red up by two.

A two-run home run by Japan in the top of the fifth tied up the game at five runs each, but not for long as USA Red took the lead for good in the bottom of the frame. Arioto started the hit-rally with her second home run of the game and then Michelle Moultrie (Jacksonville, Fla.) followed suit with a solo home run.

With the Red, White and Blue leading by two heading into the bottom of the sixth, a three-run blast from the bat of Arioto sealed the 10-5 win for USA Red.

Monica Abbott (Salinas, Calif.) earned the win after entering in the top of the fifth inning. Abbott finished the contest with four strikeouts with one earned run while starter Danielle O’Toole (Upland, Calif.) fanned one batter in her three and one-third innings in the circle. Rachel Garcia (Palmdale, Calif.) and Keilani Ricketts (San Jose, Calif.) both saw time in the circle, with Garcia striking out one batter.

In addition to Arioto’s five RBI, Moultrie also had a multi-RBI game with a 2-for-3 outing.

USA Red will take a brief break before reuniting for the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) Women’s World Championship, slated for August 2-12 in Chiba, Japan. (Information from USA Soccer.)