St. Vincent advances to NCS title game

PETALUMA — Freshman Hannah Sarlatte tossed a one-hitter and sophomore Ursyla Baumgarten had the game’s key hit as St. Vincent’s softball team pummeled Redwood Christian, 11-1, Wednesday afternoon in an NCS Division 5 semifinal game.

In Saturday’s 1 p.m. title game, the top-seeded Mustangs will host No. 3 College Prep of Oakland, a team they’ve already beaten this year.

Wednesday’s game was called after 4½ innings because of the 10-run rule.

St. Vincent put the game away with a seven-run uprising in the second. Baumgarten, who sports a team high .526 average, knocked in three runs with a double and Hayley Olson, Alexis Torres and Shannon Carroll also had hits.

“It was an inside pitch and I turned on it,” Baumgarten said. “It felt good leaving my bat. I knew it was going to fall, I was just hoping all three of my teammates would score.”

Sarlatte said her job became much easier after being staked to an 8-1 lead.

“I went out for the third inning a lot more confident and at ease,” she said. “I knew if I could throw strikes, my defense would make the plays behind me.”

Sarlatte didn’t walk a batter and struck out one.

Morgan Selmi, selected the most valuable player in North Central League II, set the tone for the game with a triple off the top of the scoreboard in the first. She came home when Olson’s ground ball was misplayed.

“We don’t have a weak link in our batting order,” coach Don Jensen said. “There’s no drop-off from the lead-off hitter to the player batting No. 9. They can all hit.”

The stats show just that. As a team, the Mustangs sport a .324 average.

Jensen lined up a number of big schools to play prior to league.

“We played Montgomery, Windsor, Ukiah and Santa Rosa to start the season,” Jensen said. “We lost those games, but several were close. We’re a young team with only three seniors. The experience we got against larger schools made us better.”

The Mustangs were 8-0 in league and that showing earned them the No. 1 seed.

Looking at the records, they are a solid favorite to defeat College Prep in Saturday’s championship game.

St. Vincent went on the road and beat the Cougars, 11-3, in the fourth game of the season.

Redwood Christian also owns two victories over College Prep. On April 26, the score was 12-8 and May 1, it was 8-6.

“St. Vincent should win,” Eagles coach Jennifer Beck said of the title game. “College Prep’s strength is its pitching. If their pitcher is on, that could even things out.

“However, St. Vincent is such a good-hitting team and they play solid defense. They’ll be tough to beat.”
College Prep, 17-5-1 and the bracket’s No. 3 seed, defeated St. Bernard Catholic (5-0) Tuesday to advance to the title game.