HS Softball: Linfield Christian Beats Calvary Chapel in Round 1 of the CIF Championship Playoffs

Jenna Perez Throws a Two-hit Shutout and Strikes out 14 Grizzlies

Jenna Perez pitched a two-hit shutout and struck out 14, as the Linfield Christian Lady Lions defeated Calvary Chapel 9-0 in Thursday’s CIF-SS Division 5 first round playoffs. It was her fourth shutout of the year.

Arial Artiga led the Linfield hitting going three for three with a double, a triple, a sac bunt, and 3 RBIs. JaeCe Simon went two for four with a triple and 3 RBIs.

It was a pitchers’ duel for four innings. Linfield had one base runner. In the second inning, Alex Perez hit a ground ball single through the right side. Calvary Chapel had no base runners through the fourth.

Linfield’s bats woke up in the top of the fifth inning. Howie was hit by pitch to lead off. Artiga followed with a line drive single to right field, Howie moving to second. Sarah Newman beat out a sac bunt attempt, loading the bases. Natalie Santilllan hit back to the pitcher who threw home for the fielder’s choice out on Howie coming from third. One out later, Simon then unloaded the bases with a line drive triple to left centerfield. Kiki McGrath then lined a single to right, scoring Simon.

Linfield threatened again in the top of the sixth inning with the bases loaded and one out. Calvary Chapel halted the threat with a double play, second to catcher to first.

The Lady Lions put the game out of reach in the top of the seventh inning with five more runs. Nayana Jenkins led off with a ground ball single through the left side and then stole second base. Simon hit an infield single that deflected off the pitcher. One out later, Jenkins and Simon moved up on a wild pitch and came home on Jenna Perez’s line single to right. Alex Perez drew a walk. One out later, Artiga hit a fly ball triple to deep left field that landed just inside the foul line and rolled to the corner, bringing in the Perez sisters. Newman’s line single to left brought in Artiga. Santillan doubled to move Newman to third, but a strikeout ended the inning.

Jenna Perez took a perfect game into the sixth inning before giving up a walk. Linfield catcher Payton Howie subsequently picked off that runner. Calvary Chapel finally broke up the no-hit bid in the bottom of the seventh inning. Alma Campos’ ground ball hit first base, and the ball bounced away from the Linfield infielders. Raylene Roybal followed with a line drive single to right center. Two strikeouts and a line drive out to centerfield ended the game.

Linfield’s record improved to 20-6 on the season. They play Culver City on Tuesday in the second playoff round.

File Photos by Stephanie LaFeure