The Camarillo High softball players arrived at the field ready to play, and it showed.
Displaying balance throughout their lineup, the fourth-seeded Scorpions defeated host Valley View 9-0 on Thursday afternoon in the quarterfinals of the CIF-Southern Section Division 2 playoffs.
Camarillo (22-7) will play Irvine at home Tuesday in the semifinals.
“Everything we do is as a team. We truly are like a family,” Camarillo senior Jenna King said. “On the bus, we all laid down and chilled at first to get focused, and then we just let loose to get pumped up. It really helped.”
Eight of Camarillo’s nine batters registered a hit against Valley View freshman pitcher Ashley Birnie.
Bianca Noriega and Kristie Dederick got the offense rolling in the second inning with back-to-back triples. Dederick’s deep drive plated Noriega, then Dederick scored when Valley View catcher Natalie Sanchez overthrew third base on a pickoff attempt.
Camarillo put the game out of reach with three runs in the fifth inning and four more in the sixth.
“We really competed at home plate and did a really good job,” Camarillo coach Jack Willard said. “That is how we try to practice, and these are competitive kids and they accept coaching. They work hard and can take a little criticism. I am proud of them.”
The 7-9 spots in Camarillo’s order are occupied by freshmen — Alexis Flores, Kellie Kooker and Chase Robledo — and each recorded an RBI in the sixth inning.
Kooker finished 2 for 3 with two RBIs, and Flores was 2 for 4 with an RBI.
“I am so proud of them. Every time they do something good, I tell them they deserve it because they are working so hard,” said King, who was 2 for 4 with an RBI. “I love having all the younger players on this team. I don’t care what age they are. They are doing what they need to do.”
Camarillo junior pitcher Sarah Shadinger threw a complete game, allowing eight hits while striking out five and walking two.
Shadinger’s defense turned two double plays to help the Scorpions escape a few jams.
Before boarding the Roadrunner shuttle again after the game, Willard complimented his players on their performance — even their travel skills.
“I told them they rode the bus well today,” Willard said. “It’s the little things like that matter. That is what I try to tell them all the time.”