Morgan Taylor and Taylor Morgan. And other stuff.

Posted by Staff Writer Eric Branch:
This and that from top-seeded Rancho Cotate’s 3-2 win over No. 4 Pinole Valley in the North Coast Section Division II semifinals Tuesday:
* Rancho Cotate’s leadoff hitter was Morgan Taylor. Its No. 2 hitter was Taylor Morgan. No. Really.
* Pinole Valley senior third baseman Nicole Kuykendall went 3 for 3 with a home run. She finished the season with a .603 average (44 for 73), six homers and 33 RBIs. In the first inning, she ripped a single between short and third. In the third, she drilled a line drive off the shoulder of Rancho Cotate pitcher Stephanie Sarris. In the sixth, she pounded a 3-2 fastball near her shoetops over the center-field fence to tie the game at 2. In the eighth, yes, you guessed it, she was walked intentionally with one out and the bases empty.
“I guess they didn’t get the memo that you don’t pitch to her,” said Spartans coach Tiffiny Valdehueza of her slugger who drew 19 walks this season. “I appreciate that they did. Not many of the teams in our league pitched to her. I appreciate that they challenged her.”
* After Kuykendall’s first three at-bats, Cougars coach Dave Johnson said he was prepared to walk her in almost any situation.
“She can really hit the ball,” Johnson said. “We learned our lesson her.”