Bakersfield, CA - Mt. San Antonio College sophomore Ciara Granado and sophomore Briana Wheeler helped punch the Mounties' ticket to Championship Monday at the 2019 CCCAA State Softball Championships. Granado drove in all three Mt. SAC runs, and Wheeler shutdown the powerful College of San Mateo offense, limiting the Bulldogs to just three hits in their 3-1 win on Sunday afternoon.
With intermittent showers, not letting anyone feel comfortable, you wouldn't know it based on the play of Wheeler in the circle. Wheeler (27-1) only walked two batters, and struck out five Bulldog hitters. The long run scored by San Mateo came in the bottom of the first inning. The run would come when sophomore Emily McAdams stole second base. The ensuing throw bounced into center field, allowing McAdams to cruise into home and give San Mateo an early 1-0 lead.
Mt. SAC meanwhile would have to wait a little while until they put a run on the board in the top of the fifth. Granado of course led the way belting a double to left field driving in sophomore Candace Haliburton and sophomore Caitlyn Felina. Granado would come through with an insurance run two innings later, when Granado lifted a ball to center field that allowed just enough time for Haliburton to score from third and make it 3-1.
San Mateo would try to get back in it, in the bottom of the seventh when Kaylyn Sterling hit a two out single to center. Wheeler slammed the door a few pitches later though, when she induced a foul-out to first base, securing the win.
For San Mateo freshman Riley Donovan would go 2-for-3, with Sterling producing the only other Bulldog hit. Aside from Granado, Haliburton had a day at the dish, going 3-for-4 with a pair of runs scored.
With the win, Mt. SAC (43-5) will have to wait to see who they play as two more games have to be played on Monday before their opponent will be determined. If all breaks right, and the weather holds, the initial championship contest is tentatively scheduled to take place at 3:00 PM on Monday.