By BRAD KEITH
STEPHENVILLE (February 26, 2017) — Stephenville dominated again on the final day of the Honeybee Classic at City Park Saturday, racing through the quarterfinals and semifinals of the Gold (championship) Bracket.
The Honeybees, who have won eight straight, (9-2) topped Gunter, 7-1, and Bangs, 8-1, behind the pitching of tournament MVP Julia Flores, a junior, and the big bat of Nadine Arredondo, a senior third baseman. They ran their win streak to eight even without playing the tournament final.
Because the opponent in the championship would have been Godley, which shares a district with Stephenville, the head coaches made a friendly agreement to settle that score between their talent-laden teams when they must, and forego an extra meeting that does not affect either club’s playoff opportunity ahead.
Flores allowed just one earned run in nine innings Saturday after tossing three shutouts in Thursday pool play. She went all four innings and surrendered just an unearned run with two strikeouts and a walk in the semifinal rout of Bangs, and struck out nine Gunter batters while allowing her only earned run of the tournament and issuing one walk earlier in the day. In 19.0 innings of tournament pitching, Flores allowed just nine total hits and two walks while recording 28 strikeouts.
Arredondo belted a 3-run homer that put the finishing touches on the semifinal rout of Gunter, and had a 3-run triple to key a six-run third inning to lift the Bees past Bangs. She also hit two home runs in pool play Thursday.
Against Gunter, DiCiccio was 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run. Against Bangs, Madison Gilder was 2-for-3 with a run, Jessica Howell was 2-for-3 with a double and an RBI and Shaffer was 3-for-3 with a double, two RBI and two runs.
Stephenville begins 8-4A district play at Life Waxahachie Tuesday at 7 p.m., and travels to Odessa Permian for tournament competition Thursday through Saturday.