Wednesday, May 11, 2011
Inland Empire: Spotlight of softball league races
By Dan Arritt
Thanks to a timely upset by the Norco softball team Tuesday, the Big VIII League will feature a winner-takes-all game Thursday between Corona Santiago and visiting Riverside Poly.
Poly (16-6, 11-2) had a chance to clinch at least a share of the league title Tuesday at Norco but lost, 1-0. The Sharks (22-5, 11-2) defeated Poly, 5-4, on April 26.
Santiago entered this week ranked No. 5 in Southern Section Division 1 and Poly was No. 8.
Another league-deciding game Thursday in the I.E. is Hesperia Oak Hills (10-1) at Apple Valley (9-2) in a Mojave River League game. If Apple Valley wins, it would be the league’s No. 1 representative heading into next week’s playoffs due to winning two of three against Oak Hills this season.
Here’s a rundown of most other league races.
Etiwanda (11-3) clinched at least a share of the league title and the league's top seeding, but Los Osos (10-4) can still earn share of the championship with a win Thursday against visiting Rancho Cucamonga and an Etiwanda loss at Alta Loma.
Redlands clinched the outright league title with 9-0 victory Tuesday at Fontana.
Yucca Valley is the outright league champion.
Barstow is the outright league champion.
La Quinta clinched its fifth consecutive league title Tuesday with a 4-1 victory against second-place Indio.
Beaumont is the outright league champion.
Citrus Valley is the outright league champion.
Colton and Cajon are tied at 11-1 heading into final two games today and Friday, but the teams don’t play each other and split their regular-season series. Cajon does have the tougher schedule this week.
Chino Hills is the outright league champion.
Vista Murrieta clinched at least a share of the league title and the No. 1 seeding, but Chaparral can still earn a share of the league title with a win Thursday at Murrieta Valley (6-8) and a Vista Murrieta loss against visiting Temecula Valley (6-8).
Lakeside and Heritage enter their final games Thursday with 12-2 records, but Lakeside owns the tiebreaker over Heritage and can clinch the league’s No. 1 seed with a win at Lake Elsinore Temescal Canyon.