A one-two punch of a Llesenia Torres triple and a Danielle Lallos sacrifice fly was all it took to bring their all-star softball team a 2-1 win on Friday at the University of the Pacific.
Torres and Lallos, both recent Kimball High graduates, were among the local high school graduates selected to play in the 24th Annual High School All-Star Baseball-Softball Classic at UOP.
The game at UOP’s Bill Simoni Field was a chance for softball players to close out their high school days with one more game with teammates and rivals from the past four years.
The game, with North against South, was scoreless after six innings when Torres, playing for the South team, tripled with Arianna Barton of Pacheco High on base in the top of the seventh inning. Lallos hit her sacrifice fly right after that.
“One of the coaches said, ‘You’re still the dynamic duo from Kimball.’ That’s just how how we are,” Lallos said. “That’s how people know us and it’s nice to be able to come out and people know who we are together as a team.”
They’ve played four years of varsity softball at Kimball High, as has fellow South all star Gabbi Cox, and the three have been teammates since their days with the Tracy Titans 10U team. That Titans team also included fellow South all-star Tayler Misfeldt of Tracy High.
Misfeldt said that most players at the all star game have been teammates or rivals at some point either in travel ball or in high school.
“I was so excited because it’s the last high school game and I get to play it with the girls I grew up with,” Misfeldt said.
Tracy High softball coach Greg Smith, who led the team through one practice during the week, said it was easy for him to turn players from 11 schools into a team for one game.
“They just love softball and a lot of them played together when they were younger,” he said. “They bonded really fast.”
The team also included Amanda Riley of Kimball High, Ericka Dominguez of Millennium High, Haley Hollis and Kayla Lopez of West High and Ellie Fisher and Sabrina George of Tracy High. Tracy High graduate Jazmin Clarke also made the team but did not make Friday’s game.
Nearby at Klein Family Field on the UOP campus the baseball all stars played their North vs. South game, with the North team taking the 4-2 win in 13 innings.
This time it was the Tracy players who were in on the winning plays.
The game was tied at 2-2 going into extra innings. In the top of the 13th, Tracy High graduate Braeden Oki, playing for the North team, came in as pinch runner, advanced to third on a missed pickoff attempt and was safe at home on a fielder’s choice. Tracy High’s Aaron Denholm reached on an error on a play that brought in another run to make it a 4-2 game.
“It was an all-around fun game,” Denholm said. “I got to play with people from my city since I was younger. It’s a different experience that comes once in a lifetime. To win it on top of all of that is a good feeling.”
All of the other local players were on the South team, including Delta Charter graduates Oliver Messier, Andrew Silva and Justin Rudnick, Millennium High’s Spencer Blackwell and Manjot Atwal, and West High’s Mitch Cowles and Devin Bell. Coaches for the South team included Delta Charter assistant coach Dean Messier and Kimball High freshman coach Ernie LaFever.
Oliver Messier, who drove in a run on a sacrifice fly in the second and pitched one inning in the fourth, and his teammates are the first from their school to be selected for the all star team.
“It shows our hard work pays off. We could achieve it if we really put ourselves out there to have a good season,” he said. “There’s a lot of great talent on both teams. Every player, it’s well-deserved.”
Contact Bob Brownne at email@example.com or 830-4227.