Story and photo by Jesse Muñoz/COC Sports Information Director
College of the Canyons hosted a triangular doubleheader on Saturday, with the Lady Cougars battling to get a 10-8 comeback victory over El Camino College in the opener, before falling to Cypress College by an 11-7 final score.
Canyons (12-4) fell behind by a 7-2 score heading in the bottom of the third inning vs. El Camino, despite scoring runs in the first two frames. COC's scored first after Chisato Kawahara walked to lead off the inning and later scored on a passed ball.
El Camino briefly tied things up in the second before Canyons answered back with an RBI single from Natsuki Kameyama in the home half of the inning.
The Warriors jumped all over Cougars' starter Rebecca Rodarte to put together a big six-run third inning that included four extra-base hits. That output prompted COC head coach John Wissmath to insert Kaitlyn Post into the circle, with the sophomore able to navigate through the rest of the inning.
Now trailing 7-2, Canyons got back to work with a six-run inning of its own. Rodarte, who remained in the Cougars' lineup, singled in a run which was followed by an RBI sac-fly from Kameyama. Camryn Webb's RBI ground out put the game at 7-5 and was followed by an infield error by the Warriors which allowed Marisa Deleon to score and bring COC to within a run.
The highlight of the inning came via a two-run home run by Julia Fuentes that put Canyons ahead 8-7. Fuentes finished the game 2-for-2 with a walk, two runs and three RBIs. The home run was her second of the season.
El Camino tied the game at 8-8 in the sixth, but again it would be Fuentes answering back with an RBI double to plate Kameyama. Ashlyn Heck got in on the action with an RBI single that gave COC some breathing room at 10-8.
The Warriors loaded the bases in the top of the seventh but were unable to do any damage.
Makayla Lopez finished the game 3-for-3 with a pair of runs. Kameyama had two RBIs, adding a walk and stolen base to her stat line.
Jenna Rorick (7-3) picked up the win after pitching two scoreless innings in relief of Post.
In the afternoon affair vs. Cypress, Canyons continued its hot hitting ans opened up an early 4-1 advantage by way of RBIs from Lopez, Rodarte, Webb and Fuentes.
But the Chargers responded by pushing across five runs against Rodarte in the top of the fifth to make it a 6-4 ballgame.
COC was able to get a run back on an RBI single from Kameyama, but Cypress answered with four more in the sixth, with the damage this time charged to Rorick.
Lopez doubled home two more runs to help keep things within striking distance at 10-7, but could get no closer. After a final run by Cypress in the seventh COC fell by an 11-7 final score.
Heck finished the game 3-for-4 with a pair of runs, and Lopez was 3-for-4 with three RBIs. Kameyama added two more hits with a run and an RBI.
Rorick took the loss after allowing six runs, three earned, on a walk and five hits. Rodarte pitched the first 5 and 1/3 innings and was charged with five runs on 10 hits and four walks.
The Lady Cougars begin Western State Conference (WSC), South Division competition on Thursday, March 5, with a home tilt vs. Glendale College. First pitch is scheduled for 2:30 p.m.
Stay up to date on all this season's action by following the College of the Canyons Athletic department on social media at @COCathletics on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube.