The562’s high school baseball and softball coverage for the 2022 season is sponsored by LBUSD Board of Education Member Megan Kerr
Survive and advance is always the theme when it comes to the CIF Southern Section softball playoffs.
The Lakewood and St. Anthony Division 3 opener on Thursday at Pan American Park came down to which team could carry the most momentum. In the end, St. Anthony was able to slowly build a big enough lead to win and advance 4-1.
St. Anthony pitcher Rose Cano had a special day. The senior celebrated her 18th birthday all while pitching a complete game. Cano had five strikeouts while allowing just five hits and one run.
“I’m super happy,” Cano said. “It’s a special birthday. It could have been my last high school game, but I’m glad we won and we get to keep it going.”
Cano opened the game with a 1-2-3 first, followed by a two RBI ground ball in the bottom half of the inning to give the Saints a 2-0 lead.
“We feed off of momentum,” Cano said. “So me doing my part early helped us get the game going.”
“That’s what we get out of her game in and game out,” St. Anthony coach Joseph Younger said of Cano. “She’s the real deal.”
Cano and the Saints carried their momentum into the second, tacking on another run off of a Jayla Cadena RBI double. The senior captain carried all the momentum throughout the game, going 4-for-4 at the plate.
Cadena spoke after the game about her role and message to her teammates.
“Being here for four years and being a team captain I feel like I have to make an impact on the other girls and help show them how to get it done,” Cadena said. “I try to hype up my teammates and give them motivation. Sometimes being uplifting to someone can really make a change in their game.”
St. Anthony put up another run in the third to take a 4-0 lead.
In the top of the fifth, Lakewood finally picked up some momentum themselves. A lead off double from Maddy Wynia was followed by a Bri Weekes RBI single.
Lakewood pitcher Laci Berochochea also threw a complete game, helping her team stay in the game late.
“I told Laci that was the best game she pitched all year,” Lakewood coach Andy Miramontes said. “She was on and she didn’t give up. I’m so proud of Laci. She did her job, she kept us in the ball game, but, unfortunately we couldn’t put any numbers up.”
Miramontes also spoke about his seniors and their final game.
“This senior class was awesome,” Miramontes said.” “They were selfless, they played for each other, and they were good leaders. I told the other girls to learn from the seniors and carry it on to next year.”
On the other hand, Younger talked about the game plan moving forward.
“Keep the energy up, and play St. Anthony softball. We need to stay within ourselves and play our game,” Younger said
St. Anthony will move on to play Quartz Hill in the second round of the CIF playoffs.
Cano had a short message for her team as they head deeper into the playoffs.
“Just two words: Don’t settle.”