The Nipomo High softball team saw its school-record postseason streak come to an end in a 1-0 loss to reigning champion La Cañada on Tuesday afternoon in Flintridge.
The game featured two of the top pitchers in the CIF-Southern Section Division 5 playoffs, with Nipomo’s Courtney Cuzick, who tossed a no-hitter in the second round, facing the Spartans’ Lauren Cox, who struck out 20 in a 7-0 win over Mary Star of the Sea in the quarterfinals.
“Without question a pitcher’s battle,” Titans coach Matt Paradis said. “It lived up to it.”
Cox struck out 13 and gave up two hits — a first-inning single to Ashley Ruiz and a second-inning double by Destiny Fryckman — in the complete-game shutout. Cox walked seven, including three free passes to Cuzick, but Nipomo couldn’t capitalize with runners on base.
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“Today we weren’t able to execute in our small-ball game,” Paradis said.
Cuzick was equally impressive, striking out six and scattering four hits while walking just two in the complete-game loss. She gave up the one run, which was unearned, on a sixth-inning RBI single by Kelsey Drange down the left-field line.
“We came out ready to play today,” Paradis said. “But in order to be the best you have to beat the best. Today La Cañada showed why they are the reigning CIF champion.”
The Titans (19-10) won their first outright Los Padres League title and won their first CIF playoff game earlier this season.
“It’s bittersweet, and the girls recognize that we had a chance, that we had a shot,” said Paradis on his teams’ exit from postseason play. “It’s a tough pill to swallow.”
All Star Game
The Fellowship of Christian Athletes All Star Football Classic has released the names of the final group of players invited to participate in Saturday’s game at Atascadero High.
Wide receivers Elias Stokes and Max Blanton, linebacker David Katz, defensive lineman Deonte Willis and kicker Garrett Schasteen will represent Paso Robles on the North Squad, along with Bearcats coach Rich Schimke.
Morro Bay’s Griley makes college choice
Edward Griley, a 6-foot-7 Morro Bay High center who helped lead the boys basketball team to back-to-back Los Padres League titles, formally agreed to continue playing his sport at Cal Lutheran in a public ceremony Tuesday.
As a senior, Griley averaged 13.4 points, 8.3 rebounds and 2.1 blocks per game and helped the Pirates to a share of the LPL title with Cabrillo before losing 71-52 to Chaminade in the first round of the CIF-Southern Section Division 4AA playoffs and finishing 17-10 overall.
Cal Lutheran is a Division III program in Thousand Oaks.