The Lady Panthers swept a doubleheader with No. 2 Aztec 11-1 and 9-0 to claim the District 1-4A title on Friday at the Farmington Sports Complex.
It was Piedra Vista's seventh consecutive district championship and the Lady Panthers have now won 47 district games in a row.
“I don't know about the kids, but I was nervous all day,” PV head coach Kevin Werth said. “I can't say enough about these kids. They just played ball and made it look easy.”
The Lady Panthers (21-5, 6-0 District 1-4A) struck early in the first game with a two-run home run by Susie Chandler following a leadoff double by Danielle Ortiz in the bottom of the first inning.
“I know we have a big hitter after me with Susie, so I like to get on base so she can hit me in,” said Ortiz, who went 4-for-4 with two doubles and two RBIs in the Game 1 victory.
Chandler broke the game open for PV with a three-run double to cap off a five-run bottom of the fourth for the Lady Panthers.
Chandler, PV's shortstop and a New Mexico State University commit, went 2-for-4 with five RBIs in the win.
Jordan Montoya added a solo home run in the bottom of the fifth inning to push PV's lead to 8-0.
Aztec (20-6, 4-2) scored its only run in the two games after an RBI-single by Amber Linker in the top of the sixth.
The Lady Panthers tacked on three more runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to end the game via run-rule with one out in the inning.
Chandler scored the final run after a throwing error by Aztec catcher Taylor Santistevan on a pick-off attempt.
PV starting pitcher Krissy Fortner earned the win after allowing only one run on five hits while striking out 11 Aztec batters.
“It's really exciting, and it was really important to show everyone how hard we've been working.
” Fortner said of the win.
Hailey Morris took the loss for the Lady Tigers after giving up 11 runs on 12 hits in five and one-third innings.
“They just put the bat on the ball and we didn't play good enough defensively,” said Aztec head coach Jose Santistevan. “We've been in this position for the last eight years. Those guys come in and win district. It happened to us last year. We'll recover.”
In Game 2, the Lady Panthers scored three runs in the bottom of the first thanks in large part to three walks and two wild pitches by Aztec starting pitcher Angela Minjarez.
Alex Moreno hit a pair of two-run home runs for the Lady Panthers to help lock up the victory.
“I've been struggling at the plate the last couple of games,” Moreno said. “But I just went back to the basics.”
Werth has been impressed with the play of his catcher all season.
“She's been a good leader for us,” Werth said of Moreno. “She's a really smart catcher, and she does a great job behind the plate. If she can keep her bat hot for the next five games, we'll be in good shape.”
Tabor Woosley went 2-for-4 with a run and an RBI in the Game 2 win.
Fortner again pitched well for PV, tossing a shutout over seven innings while striking out eight and walking one Aztec batter.
“If she's throwing like that, and we put up a crooked number early, then I like our chances,” Werth said.
Minjarez struggled with her control throughout the contest for Aztec in the loss, walking five and allowing nine runs on nine hits in six innings.
Both teams will now await their first round matchups for the state tournament. The bracket will be released on Sunday.
“We plan with our tough schedule to work up to this, and this is when we usually peak,” Werth said. “We're starting to do that now.”
Farmington 15, Kirtland Central 0
Farmington 13, Kirtland Central 1
Farmington High picked up a couple of key district wins, sweeping Kirtland Central to close the regular season.
The Lady Scorps won 15-0 in three innings in Game 1 and 13-1 in Game 2.
“It was good to see that we came out strong and confident right away and continued that in the second game,” said FHS head coach Johnny Curry.
FHS (12-14, 2-4 District 1-4A) scored a pair of runs in the first inning, five in the second and eight in the third to force a run-rule.
In Game 2, the Lady Scorps used a five-run second inning and six-run third inning en route to a dominant performance over the Lady Broncos.
Sicily Villano picked up both wins for FHS.
The Lady Scorps' starter threw a three-inning no-hitter with six strike outs in Game 1, then followed that up by allowing just one hit and one run in three and two-third innings in Game 2.
Cheyenne Cochran went 3-for-5 with three home runs in the two games, including a grand slam in the top of the second inning of Game 2.
“Cheyenne Cochran was outstanding at the plate,” Curry said.
Kirtland Central starters Erin Bitsuie and Shiloh Lewis took the losses for the Lady Broncos (7-13, 0-6).
Bitsuie threw three innings, allowing 14 hits in Game 1, while Lewis gave up 14 hits in four innings in Game 2.
The Lady Scorps will await their seeding for the state tournament on Sunday.
“We'll get back to practice, build on these wins and see where the seeding committee places us,” Curry said.
Joshua Perry can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org;505-564-4648. Follow him on Twitter @jperrysuu.