The Warriors’ goal of a North Coast Section softball championship remained on track with an 8-5 win over visiting University on Friday afternoon.
The No. 2 seed Hoopa girls took control of the game early and were able to hold the San Francisco team at bay, moving on to a semifinal showdown against No. 3 Credo next week, probably on Wednesday.
Freshman pitcher Savannah Colegrove was instrumental in the win and continues to grow in stature.
Colegrove was in control throughout, tossing a complete game and striking out nine, while also playing her part on offense.
“She’s definitely taking care of both sides of the ball right now,” Hoopa head coach Glenn Moore said of his starting pitcher. “She kept them off balance. She controlled the game.”
At the plate, Colegrove finished 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI.
Junior catcher Naschewen Hunsucker also had a big game on both sides of the ball for the No. 2 seeds, finishing 3-for-4 with a double and an RBI.
“Savanah and Nas, they both killed the ball,” the head coach said. “They’re both hitting the ball really well right now.”
Hunsucker’s presence behind the plate has also been key for the Little 4 champs this season and that continued to be the case once again on Friday as she set the tone on defense.
“I tease her when I tell her that a happy Nas is a happy Lady Warriors team,” the head coach said. “She controlled the game for us. She’s very aggressive both offensively and defensively.”
The Warriors opened up a quick 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first and made it 6-0 with four more runs in the third.
University took advantage of some defensive miscues from the home team in the top of the fourth, narrowing the gap with four runs.
But that was as close as they would get, with the Warriors adding a pair of insurance runs in the sixth.
Seniors Daisy Tracy and Alexia Jackson each also had a big game for the Warriors, finishing with a pair of hits each, with Tracy driving in two runs.
The head coach, however, feels his team did not play as well as it could.
“We played okay today. We made a few errors,” he said. “We’ve got to kind of relax and work more on playing our game. When we play Lady Warriors softball, we’re pretty good.”
The Hoopa girls will now turn their attention to Credo.
“That’s going to be a tough game,” Moore said.
Ray Hamill writes at humboldtsports.com, where you can read lots more about sports in Humboldt County.