Mary Jordan’s view of last year’s Class 4A Sunset Region softball final came mostly from a spot on Shadow Ridge’s bench.
The Mustangs sophomore had a much different view and played a far more visible role in yet another region title Friday at Majestic Park.
Jordan was behind the plate, calling and catching another gem from senior pitcher Mandy Harmon as the Mustangs defeated Centennial 7-1 to capture their third straight Sunset crown. Shadow Ridge (26-10) earned a berth in the state tournament, which begins Friday at Majestic Park.
“Last year, I was sitting most of the season,” Jordan said. “I’m excited about this year. I take more pride in it.”
Jordan took over the everyday catching duties this season after Rayna Bradshaw graduated. By season’s end, though, it looked as if Jordan had been catching Harmon for years.
“I’d never caught Mandy before, and she’s really good,” Jordan said. “It took about a week-and-a-half for me to really get used to catching her. I just try to frame pitches and try to block any balls that might hit the ground.”
Jordan is a large part of the reason why the Mustangs allowed only one run and six hits in their four region tournament games. The Mustangs’ four opponents combined to hit 6-for-90 (.067).
“One of the big parts of the game to me is having trust in the catcher,” Harmon said. “I had to learn to trust her early in the season. She’s done a very good job.”
Harmon’s pitching, a solid defense and a quick-strike offense made the Mustangs unbeatable in the tournament.
Ashley Eldridge went 3-for-4, scoring three runs in the first four innings, to spark Shadow Ridge. Harmon’s three-run homer in the third inning put the Mustangs ahead 4-0.
A bases-loaded walk to Rae-Ann Bohm and a two-out, two-run single by Ashley Huddleston in the fourth inning essentially put away the game.
“Everybody on our team deserves credit,” Harmon said. “We’re doing this as a team.”
Centennial (26-9) finally scored in the seventh inning, snapping Harmon’s streak of 47 consecutive scoreless innings during which she allowed only 10 hits.
Katie Lee singled and scored on a wild pitch for the Bulldogs, who will face Green Valley in a state play-in game Monday at Bonanza.
• Centennial 22, Durango 2 — In the losers’ bracket final, Sierra Golia had four hits before the bottom three in Durango’s order even batted as Centennial stormed to a 16-0 lead in the third inning.
Golia singled twice in a six-run first inning and singled and doubled in a six-run third for the Bulldogs. She finished 4-for-4 with four RBIs.
Johnna Brown went 5-for-5 with a home run, five runs and four RBIs.
Also for the Bulldogs, Mikalya Djordjevic went 2-for-5 with two doubles and five RBIs, Lee was 2-for-4 with three RBIs and two runs, and Juelaine Noa finished 2-for-3 with a double and two RBIs.
The top four spots in the Bulldogs’ lineup scored 15 runs.
Lindsay Konopelko pitched a two-hitter for Centennial.
Contact reporter Bartt Davis at bdavis@ reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5230.In-depth high school sports coverage