Cats walk-off to second round
BRAWLEY — An Imperial Valley League softball rivalry spilled into the CIF-San Diego Section playoffs when the teams from Brawley Union and Imperial highs met in a Div. II first-round game here on Thursday night.
After six innings of no-run ball, the game was decided in dramatic fashion after the Wildcats’ Savannah Contreras connected for a bases-loaded shot in the bottom of the seventh to bring in the game-winning run in walkoff fashion. The junior shortstop saw the ball well all game and had previously delivered a single in the sixth inning.
“I just wanted to come through for my team because they deserved it,” Contreras said.
As the teams split their two IVL meetings, Contreras said the No. 2 Wildcats knew they were in for a tough game against the No. 10 Tigers, who upset No. 7 Christian on Tuesday to reach the double-elimination portion of the tourney.
“We knew Imperial was a good-hitting team so we talked about coming out and also hitting,” she said.
While both teams scattered a few hits here and there throughout the game, it wasn’t until the seventh inning that the hits began to come together in favor of Brawley.
The Wildcats’ Brianna Hoffman singled with one out before Caryn Aguilar stepped in to pinch-run and moved to second on another base-hit from Angelina Rodriguez.
Dana Alvarado’s bunt single then loaded the bases for Brawley and while the Tigers were able to get a second out on strikes, Con- treras followed and came through with the game-winning RBI.
With the win, the Wildcats advance to the second round of the playoffs, where they are set to face No. 3 Santana in a game tenta- tively set for 10 a.m. on Saturday in Brawley.
Imperial will also play in a second-round game at No. 6 San Pasqual tentatively set for 2 p.m. on Saturday.
Brawley Union High’s Jalyn Ayala prepares to reach second base as Imperial High’s Cassandra Valle awaits a relay from the outfield during the teams’ game on Thursday.
Brawley Union High’s Alysia Gallardo and Imperial High’s Julyannah Ramirez react to a hit during their game on Thursday.