La Canada softball pitchers combine on no-hitter

TEMPLE CITY -- The right arm of Lauren Cox has been carrying the La Canada softball team all season. Cox and Alyssa Stolmack combined on a no-hitter against Temple City and won the Rio Hondo League championship at Temple City High School on Monday.

Cox started the game, went five innings and walked only one batter. Her catcher, Catherine Horner, provided the pop with a two-run home run and the Spartans shut out Temple City, 7-0.

“We know we don’t have to get Lauren too many runs,” La Canada coach K.C. Mathews said. “She’s been fantastic in the circle all year long. She does a tremendous job. Our pitching has been our strength.”

Cox wasn’t necessarily dominate -- she struck out only four batters -- but retired the first 11 batters she faced. The only player to reach base against her was Kristin Hudak with a two-out walk in the fourth inning.

Stolmack relieved Cox in the sixth inning and pitched two perfect innings to complete the no-hitter. She also added some sock at the plate, hitting a solo home run in the seventh inning.

“She’s strong. She’s got strong legs,” Mathews said. “When she gets a hold of one, it’s going to go.”

Horner hit a two-run home run that bounced off the top of the fence in left field in the fifth inning to give La Canada a 5-0 lead.

La Canada (19-4-1), the top-ranked team in the CIF Southern Section Division 5 poll, scored one run in the first inning and two more in the second inning to give Cox an early 3-0 lead. The only drawback in the game for La Canada was that the team left nine runners on base.

“We just kept nibbling and nibbling and didn’t take advantage of all our opportunities,” Mathews said. “We left quite a few runners on base. If we don’t clean that up a little bit in the playoffs, it’s going to hurt.”

Temple City (6-17) dropped to 2-7 in Rio Hondo League play.