"Bell-Jeff is always a great team," Notre Dame Coach Dana Vasquez said. "I mean, they have been in the CIF Division VII championship for the past couple years. They are a good team. It was just fighting hard all the way through. I was pleased with the outcome. I wasn't pleased it took us that long."
Bellarmine-Jefferson (1-4) scored a run in the sixth to pull ahead going into the final frame against the Knights, but then the wheels came off as the Guards were touched for five runs in the top of the seventh and then went in order in the bottom of the inning for a stinging defeat.
The six hits the Knights (7-3) got in the seventh off of pitcher Karina Hernandez equaled the amount of hits the senior hurler had surrendered in the game up to that point.
"We had the opportunity on a bunt to make a play. We called it and we didn't execute. That gave them an extra at-bat and that changed the whole game because now, instead of two outs, they had one," Bell-Jeff Coach Florencio Galindo said of the final inning swoon. "[Then Hernandez] missed a couple spots and [The Knights] executed and got some timely hits."
The game had been tied at 2 since the top of the second inning before the hosts snatched the lead with two outs in the sixth on a RBI-single by Monique Landini. The senior chopped a single up the middle that bounced over the second baseman's glove and into the outfield, allowing Tiffany Galindo to race home from second.
"I was just thinking make contact with the ball and put it in play," Landini said of her sixth inning hit that gave her team a short-lived advantage late.
The game started out strong for Bell-Jeff, which led, 2-0, after one. Hernandez sat down the Knights in order in the first on only six pitches.