Youth Softball: 12UB Spirit gets berth to Western Nationals

The Spirit of Morgan Hill 12UB softball team, which included players from Gilroy, earned a berth to the ASA Girls' 12B Western National Tournament.

SUNNYVALE—The Spirit of Morgan Hill 12UB softball team, which includes players from Gilroy, tied for fifth place at the Nor Cal ASA Championships June 26-28. The Spirit’s fifth place finish secured their spot in the ASA Girls’ 12B Western National Tournament July 27 to Aug. 2 in Medford, Ore.
In the 14-team tournament, the team remained in the winner’s bracket after defeating the Marin Tremors and San Bruno Storm in its first two games of the tournament.
Reyna Peoples pitched six solid innings in the tournament opener, striking out nine and walking two. The Spirit trailed 3-1 in the fifth inning when Peoples started a rally with a base hit. Emma Horn then reached on an error to bring Peoples home.
Sam Herlihy, who went 2 for 2 in the game, singled to score Horn. Arianna DeHaro forced an error on a bunt to score Herlihy then stole two bases before being thrown out at the plate.
Jessica Mendes stole two bases and a singled in the game, but couldn’t add to the Spirit’s total.
Sam Avilla singled in the sixth inning for Morgan Hill. Peoples added a double and stole home on a single and decoy steal of second by Horn.
Peoples returned to the circle on Saturday and led the Spirits to a 5-4 win over the Storm. The Spirit’s pitcher struck out four and walked two in six innings of work.
The Spirits trailed, but used two-hit outtings from Peoples and Madison Reggiani to take the lead. They faced a very dominant Aubry Fotu in the circle, who later tripled.
The go-ahead run came in the sixth inning when Nicole Silva-Apana singled, was sacrificed to second base and driven in off a single from Peoples. Peoples then returned to the circle to retire the final three batters in order.
Adele Soto owned the circle for five innings on Sunday for the Spirit. She tossed five strong innings, limiting the Campbell Crush hitters to two unearned runs. Despite her stellar performance, Morgan Hill fell 11-3.
Spirit would strike for three runs over the fourth through seventh innings, but couldn’t stave off two Crush rallies.
Madison Langley singled and would eventually score Spirit’s final run. Peoples, Mendes, Horn all singled in the game.
Spirits’ catcher Cassie Church also singled and earned a team-glove award for her outstanding play behind the plate.
The Crush went on to the championship match, finishing second behind the Los Gatos Magic. Campbell lost 1-0 to the Los Gatos team.