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Shadow Ridge back on track

Somewhere out there might be a blueprint for the perfect softball game.

Whoever has it might want to compare notes with Shadow Ridge.

The Mustangs, who entered Friday’s game at Centennial having lost six of their previous seven, pounded 14 hits, played flawless defense, got tremendous pitching and took advantage of nearly every Bulldogs miscue.

The result was a 12-0 win for Shadow Ridge and a huge sigh of relief for the two-time defending Sunset Region champion.

“We went into this game saying no matter what happens we need to have fun,” said senior pitcher Mandy Harmon, who tossed a one-hitter. “We wanted to win, and we knew if we won, it would boost our confidence.

“It felt really good.”

Shadow Ridge (6-6, 2-1 Northwest League), which dropped a heartbreaking 7-6 decision to Arbor View on Wednesday, used three hits, two Centennial errors, a hit batter and two mental mistakes to take a 3-0 lead in the first inning. Two of the runs scored on a double steal and a wild throw.

“We did what we had to do to win the game today,” Mustangs coach Cynthia Winter said. “After that hard loss to Arbor View, our goal was to get together, relax and just have fun.

“That really happened today.”

Centennial (8-2, 2-1) never recovered.

The Bulldogs couldn’t get untracked offensively as Harmon fooled Centennial hitters with her curveball, dropball and screwball over the outside half of the plate.

The Bulldogs had just two base runners — Sierra Golia, who had a bloop single to left on a hanging changeup to lead off the fourth, and Johnna Brown, who was hit by a pitch with two outs in the seventh. Brown was caught stealing to end the game.

“I tried to throw more outside today, and it seemed to work,” Harmon said.

Harmon had seven strikeouts and induced 13 groundouts. The Mustangs didn’t commit an error.

“No matter who the pitcher is, our defense needs to talk and back her up, and they need to support her,” Winter said. “They did that today.”

The Mustangs used two walks, an infield hit and an error to score twice more in the fifth and then broke open the game with a seven-run seventh inning.

Mary Jordan was 4-for-5 with three RBIs for Shadow Ridge. Ashley Eldridge went 2-for-5 with a double, two RBIs and two runs as every Mustang on the roster either had a hit or scored a run.

“My hope is that’ll be able to carry on into future games,” Winter said. “We’re definitely going to enjoy this one.”

Contact reporter Bartt Davis at bdavis@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5230.

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