6/13/2014 4:27:00 PM Madison Martinez pitches Othello to No. 2 in state
Photo by Bob Barrett Madison Martinez smiles as she exchanges a high five with Huskie third base coach Mike Jensen after blasting the first of two home runs during Othello’s 5-1 win over Fife.
Photo by Bob Barrett Othello’s Madison Martinez, Mariah DeLeon and Kirsten Quigley are all smiles with the thrill of the Huskies 9-3 victory as W.F. West’s T Woolen walks away showing the agony of defeat.
When you lose only three games in a season, it's usually the last one that hurts the most. Including their last two wins in the district tournament, the Othello Huskies rattled off five consecutive wins in the post season but fell four runs short of a 2A softball state championship with a 4-0 loss to the Lake Washington Kangaroos at the state tournament in Selah. Head coach Rudy Ochoa said the Huskies began the tournament on a positive note against Sultan but just couldn't get it done. "Madison (Martinez) is the hot pitcher right now, so we went with her ... all four games," he said. With Martinez on the mound, Othello scored 10 runs over the first four innings in game one - scoring in each inning - while Martinez held Sultan to three hits over five innings in a 10-0 shutout win. The sophomore pitcher struck out six and went 3-4 at the plate in the victory. Tori Zambrano went 3-3, while Diamond Franco, Mariah DeLeon and Sofie Rodriguez added two hits each. In game two, Martinez again took the mound, this time against Fife. Ochoa said she was again - spot on - taking another shutout into the seventh inning before surrendering a solo home run in the 5-1 Huskie win. Othello managed four runs in the fourth and took a 5-0 lead into the seventh before Martinez shut the door. "They came close with a runner at second and a deep fly to center, which Diamond caught and saved a second home run to end the game," Ochoa said. Not only was the win Martinez's second complete game of the tournament, she also went 3-3 at the plate with two solo home runs. Zambrano went 2-3. Holly Fleshman and Rodriguez each had doubles. In the semi finals, the Huskies faced an undefeated W.F. West. Again, Martinez got the start and turned in another pitching gem. After two scoreless innings, the Huskies began hitting the ball the second time through the order with a six-run third. Franco led off with a double to left field, followed by a double by Dominique Martinez, which scored Franco. Kirsten Quigley then walked, followed by a two-run triple to left center by M. Martinez. With three across the plate, DeLeon walked, then Zambrano singled home M. Martinez from third. With two runners on, Lidi DeLeon knocked in M. DeLeon and Zambrano to give the Huskies a 6-0 lead. W.F. West would get to M. Martinez with two runs in the fourth, but the Huskies quickly added two of their own in the fifth when Franco knocked in M. DeLeon and Zambrano with a single. Holding an 8-2 lead, Martinez surrendered another run in the sixth - and following the Huskies ninth run in the seventh - then shut down W.F. West to get her third win of the tournament to send the Huskies to the championship game. The 9-3 win was Martinez's third complete game. The Huskies had 12 hits, including two hits each by Franco, M. Martinez, M. DeLeon and Zambrano. In the final game, the Huskies met Lake Washington and freshman pitcher Tori Bivens. Ochoa said the Huskies came against a pitcher they just could not hit. "She kept them guessing with her rise (pitch) and an excellent change up," he said. M. Martinez made her fourth consecutive start against a tough hitting Kangaroo team. She held them to nine hits and four runs over seven innings, but it wasn't enough. Bivens, on the other hand, was un-hittable. "We normally don't see a rise in our league ... it's tough to hit," Ochoa said. She retired 20 consecutive Huskies and took a perfect game into the seventh inning before Quigley's two-out single past the third baseman broke it up. Bivens retired the next batter to secure the 4-0 shut out win and a 2A state championship. She struck out nine hitters and Ochoa said the girls were understandably upset at the end of the game. "They, of course, wanted to take home the championship," he said. "We (the coaches) told them there are a lot of teams that wished they could be in their spot right now. We were really proud." The Huskies ended their 2014 season with an outstanding 24-3 record, a co-league championship and a second-place finish at the state tournament. "Next year, we are hoping to see another great season ... with that state experience, we should be tough to be beat," Ochoa said. "No regrets. Next year should be even better."