CAL-HI SPORTS BAY AREA BASEBALL & SOFTBALL

In support of our weekly TV show that airs on Sundays at 4:30 p.m. on KRON TV Channel 4 (San Francisco), here's the latest top 20 rankings for S.F. Bay Area baseball and softball. Note: These rankings are for all schools in the CIF Central Coast Section, all schools in the CIF North Coast Section (except Humboldt-Del Norte) plus schools in Solano and Napa counties of the Sac-Joaquin Section.

BASEBALL TOP 20

(After games of May 10; last week's ranking in parentheses)

1. (2) Clayton Valley (Concord) 21-3

2. (3) Armijo (Fairfield) 25-2

3. (1) Serra (San Mateo) 25-4

4. (5) St. Francis (Mountain View) 23-6

5. (4) Leland (San Jose) 21-2

6. (6) California (San Ramon) 15-4

7. (7) Valley Christian (San Jose) 21-8-1

8. (10) Wilcox (Santa Clara) 23-6

9. (12) Mitty (San Jose) 20-8

10. (20) De La Salle (Concord) 16-8

11. (8) Deer Valley (Antioch) 19-6-1

12. (14) Las Lomas (Walnut Creek) 16-4

13. (15) Benicia 19-6-1

14. (16) Bishop O'Dowd (Oakland) 16-5

15. (13) El Cerrito 16-4

16. (nr) Live Oak (Morgan Hill) 17-9

17. (9) Leigh (San Jose) 21-8-1

18. (17) North Monterey County (Castroville) 23-7

19. (nr) Carmel 25-6

20. (nr) Freedom (Oakley) 12-8

Baseball Notes & Highlights

St. Francis coach Chris Bradford won the 600th game of his prep coaching career last week, but it will be No. 601 that he'll really be able to remember. The Lancers hosted No. 1 Serra last Friday in a showdown for first-place in the WCAL and scored seven runs in the bottom of the sixth inning en route to a 13-9 victory. The result locked the two teams in a tie for first in regular season standings in the WCAL with league playoffs to take place this week. Lawrence Ng smashed a three-run homer early in the game for St. Francis off of Serra ace Chuck Lofgren. The big rally in the sixth was capped with back-to-back homers by Steve Schields and Kyle Spraker.

With Serra losing, the new No. 1 in the Bay Area (and for Northern California as well) is coach Bob Ralston's club at Clayton Valley. The Eagles currently have a two-game lead for first-place in the Bay Valley Athletic League. Armijo of Fairfield moved up to No. 2 and Serra slid down to No. 3. The Padres should be slightly ahead of St. Francis due to having two less losses over the course of the season.

Despite being no-hit for the first four innings, California of San Ramon came through for a 4-3 win last Friday over Amador Valley and helped set up a big game this week against San Ramon Valley. The Grizzlies scored all four runs in the sixth inning, two coming in one RBI singles by David Gonzales and Colin Conklin. The Wolves start this week just one game behind California in East Bay Athletic League standings. They won last Friday, 1-0, over Livermore as Nick Buchta and Alex Ricks combined for a no-hitter.

It took two weeks and two rain-caused postponements, but El Cerrito finally won the annual Alhambra Easter Classic last week with a 5-1 triumph over Pinole Valley. The Gauchos came into the game after just having their 14-game win streak snapped by Alameda in a league game. Mario Cox's two-run single in the sixth inning was the key blow for El Cerrito. Daniel Gruen got out of a few tough jams and picked up the complete-game pitching win.

Finally, congrats to Carmel coach Mike Kelly, not for a milestone win, but a milestone event. He became a father last week.

SOFTBALL TOP 20

(After games of May 10; last week's ranking in parentheses)

1. (1) Notre Dame (Salinas) 26-2

2. (2) Mitty (San Jose) 24-2

3. (3) Vanden (Travis AFB) 18-3-1

4. (5) Freedom (Oakley) 20-2

5. (7) Livermore 18-4

6. (9) Carlmont (Belmont) 25-4

7. (10) Foothill (Pleasanton) 14-4

8. (11) Deer Valley (Antioch) 16-4

9. (4) Moreau (Hayward) 18-3

10. (12) Alameda 18-3

11. (14) Campolindo (Moraga) 15-3-1

12. (15) Acalanes (Lafayette) 19-1

13. (13) Rancho Cotate (Rohnert Park) 16-4

14. (16) Monterey 26-2

15. (19) Arroyo (San Lorenzo) 17-3

16. (17) Napa 21-4-2

17. (18) Newark Memorial (Newark) 18-4

18. (nr) Petaluma 14-2

19. (nr) Hollister 19-8

20. (6) North Salinas (Salinas) 17-7

Softball Notes & Highlights

The major movement among the top 10 this week was due to losses by previous No. 4 Moreau and previous No. 6 North Salinas. Moreau lost, 2-0, to Arroyo as Amy Espinoza pitched the shutout and struck out eight. Espinoza outdueled Moreau ace Lizzy Prescott, who whiffed 12 but made an error in the first inning that aided in Arroyo scoring the only two runs of the game. North Salinas continued to struggle offensively in a 1-0 loss to Hollister. Vikings All-American pitcher Monica Abbott still has a 0.00 ERA in Tri-County League games this year.

In the Napa Valley, pitcher Carolyn Rupnik of Napa High upped her number of scoreless innings in a row to 80 by tossing a four-hitter with 10 strikeouts in a 1-0 win over Armijo. The Indians have already clinched the Monticello Empire League Division II title and will now plan on opening the CIF Sac Joaquin Section playoffs this weekend in Sacramento.

After posting a 4-1 win earlier in the week over San Ramon Valley, Foothill took a 1-0 win over Monte Vista and was able to move up three spots in this week's rankings. The Knights needed a seventh-inning rally with two outs to score the game's only run. It came on a single by shortstop Lindsey Jones and scoring the run by Lindsey's sister, Courtney.


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