By John M. Sherrard
"It feels great to be in this position," Mt. SAC coach Ruby Rojas said. "We'll just take it one pitch at a time."
The No. 2 seed Mounties (39-3) will aim to capture their 11th Regional title today at noon against No. 6 seed Antelope Valley College (37-6).
Antelope Valley defeated El Camino, 5-4, in the evening elimination game to advance to the championship.
Mt. SAC starting pitcher Tiffany Kennedy-Cummings (15-1) brought a no hitter into the fifth inning before giving up a single to the second batter after only two runners reached base out of the first 14.
For the second game in a row Mt. SAC sophomore left fielder Aleyah Wilbon (3 for 4, RBI, dbl.) collected three hits to lead the 14-hit attack.
Four other Mounties had two hits each – Taylor Jaurique (2-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs, dbl., HR), Toni Mendoza (2-4, R, RBI, dbl.), Alyssa Rasso (2-3, 2 R, 2 RBIs) and Racqual Espinoza (2-3, R, RBI, dbl.). Sophomore center fielder Bree Maikai added a triple, driving in a run.
"We've worked hard to get to this point," Wilbon said. "We've just stuck to the basics to get where we are now."
Mt. SAC scored three runs in the second inning after Maikai tripled in Mendoza and came home on a fielding error by the Warriors for a 2-0 lead and Rasso scored the third run on an RBI single by Kayla Sok.
The Mounties stretched the lead to 5-0 in the fourth inning on an RBI double by Espinoza, scoring Rasso. Espinoza scored later in the inning for the 5-0 lead.
The Mounties added two more runs in the fifth for the 7-0 lead as Mendoza doubled in Jaurique, who then came home on a run-scoring single to center field by Rasso.
"We just came into this weekend focused on only one game at a time," Mendoza said.
El Camino broke through with four runs in the sixth, to trail 7-4.
Espinoza finished up for Kennedy-Cummings to send the Mounties into the championship.
The Mounties added two insurance runs in the sixth on Jauriques two-run blast and the Warriors finished with one in the seventh.
"We respond and bounce back and that's all you can ask for and that's what we work on a practice," Rojas added.
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For additional information, please contact the Mt. SAC Sports Information Office at 909.274.4630.