Los Angeles Preps: La Palma Kennedy

ANAHEIM – For two rounds of the playoffs -- three if you include a wild-card game to play into the first round -- La Palma Kennedy had been living the dream.

Cheyanne Tarango
ESPNLA.comCanyon pitcher Cheyanne Tarango, who has signed with Tennessee, got a big lead early and cruised to a win.
A series of upsets, including a victory over top-seeded Esperanza -- ranked No. 4 in the nation, no less -- had the Fighting Irish in a confident mood.

But the dream turned nightmarish against Anaheim Canyon on Thursday. Irish pitcher Candice Shadwell was hit hard, and Canyon rode a five-run first inning to an 8-1 victory in the quarterfinals of the CIF-Southern Section championships for softball.

“We had so much confidence,” said Kennedy coach Sarah Mesa, whose team scored an 8-5 victory over Los Osos in the previous round. “The first inning was really hard for us. They were the better team today.”

The early uprising gave Canyon confidence, too, and the Comanches weren’t lacking for it to begin with.

“We have enough (confidence) to win,” said third baseman Kelly Stowe, who had a single, double and triple, scored twice and drove in three runs. “We’re not overconfident. We’re not going to be cocky. As soon as you do that, you lose.”

With a five-run lead, pitcher Cheyanne Tarango was unbeatable. She struck out 11, and allowed only four hits -- two in the sixth inning when Kennedy scored its only run, on Samantha Concepcion’s single.

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The CIF Southern Section Division 1 playoffs had a couple upsets in the first round. Top-seeded Esperanza lost, 3-1, to La Palma Kennedy, a wild-card team.

The Saugus softball team, the champions of the Foothill League, was shut out by Canyon of Anaheim, 8-0.

Here’s a look at the results from the first round games in the Southern Section softball playoffs:

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LA North and Orange County: Royal shuts out Yorba Linda in softball

May, 18, 2011
Royal of Simi Valley was the only team from north L.A. County to make it out of the wild-card round of the CIF Southern Section Division 1 softball playoffs on Tuesday.

Royal beat Yorba Linda, 2-0. Kelyn Fillmore was the star for Royal at the plate and on the mound. She drove in a run with an RBI double. She started the game and went five innings, giving up four hits.

Ali Mosier was 2-for-2 and scored on Fillmore’s double. Katelyn Tollefson knocked in Fillmore with an RBI double in the next at-bat.

Royal moves on to face second-seeded Etiwanda in the first round.

Thousand Oaks lost to La Palma Kennedy, 4-0.

Hart was rained out on Tuesday and was scheduled to play Upland today.

Here is a look at the wild-card games in the Southern Section softball playoffs:

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LA North: CIF Southern Section softball playoff pairings

May, 16, 2011
The Oaks Christian softball team earned the top seed in the CIF Southern Section Division 3 playoffs. La Canada is the No. 1 seed in the Division 5 playoffs.

The CIF Southern Section softball playoffs begin Tuesday with wild-card games.

Here’s a look at some of the key match-ups in Division I of teams from the LA North:

Thousand Oaks (20-8) at La Palma Kennedy (12-9)

Hart (18-11) at Upland (15-9)

Yorba Linda (12-11) at Royal (16-10)

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Orange County: Athletes of the Week

September, 14, 2010
Eli Pleasant, La Palma Kennedy, Jr.

Pleasant returned interceptions 75 and 46 yards for touchdowns and caught touchdown passes of 50 and 46 yards, as well as a two-point conversion. It's not the first time a player had a big performance in a one-sided game, except Pleasant's pleasant performance came in a 69-51 shootout against Gahr to improve his team's record to 2-0.

Molly Babcock, Woodbridge, Jr.

The defending Sea View League champion in the 1600 meters outleaned Mira Costa junior Kelli Sugimoto to win the Division 2 Junior race at the 27th Laguna Hills Invitational on Saturday, the first cross country invitational of the season. Babcock clocked 17:54.32 – the second-fastest time of the day – to Sugimoto's 17:54.51 on the three-mile course.