Desert Ridge has been the steadier performer this season than Thursday's opponent Corona del Sol. That proved true as the teams began 6A Central Region softball competition.
Desert Ridge scored six runs in the second and seven times in the fourth in pulling off a 13-0 romp over visiting Corona.
Desert Ridge sophomore Shaylee Ackerman tossed a three-hitter and highlighted the second-inning uprising with a three-run homer. Desert Ridge has the glossier record 13-2 overall and 7-2 in power-ranking games to Corona's 13-8, 6-2 prg marks. In the latest power-rankings they were side-by-side -- Desert Ridge No. 6 and Corona No. 7. It didn't look like it in this one.
"I really like my team" Corona del Sol coach Jeep Ray said. "They get along and they have fun. We've been up and down."
Earlier this week Corona upended Hamilton, 4-2, and pieced together a two-out rally in their last at-bat Tuesday to edge Desert Mountain, 4-3. The momentum of those wins didn't carry over.
Make no mistake, Desert Ridge swung the ba to the tune of 16 hits. Wind, sun and timidity on occasion in the outfield helped that number along. Every Desert Ridge player reached base and eight of the nine had at least one hit.
That was more than enough for Ackerman, who fanned eight and walked one in hurling her third shutout of the season.
Desert Ridge coach Jennifer Broderick opted not to play in a second invitational during spring break. The Jaguars stayed sharp with some practices over and have suffered losses to arguably the two best teams in 6A -- Pinnacle and Hamilton back-to-back in the last 10 days.
"We didn't play well in those games," Broderick said. "We played better against Hamilton, but they made some great defensive plays. Those are the games we've been down in. Today we played a good game all around."
Five successive hits with one out in the second inning off Corona's Jessica Lynch accounted for all the inning's runs. Sydney Broderick, Hannah Pier, Alanna Vela, Jadyn Gonzales, Leah Molina and Ackerman combined for the all the damage. Ackerman was 2-2 for a walk and hit by pitch. Molina drove in four runs with a two-run double and two-run single. She circled the bases on the latter as it got past the right fielder.
Olivia Miller, Lynch and Nicole Neumann had the hits for Corona. The teams meet again Friday at Corona.