Salt Lake • Cyprus second baseman Felicia Duran knows the importance of leading by example. In a Region 6 showdown against East, the senior second baseman led Cyprus to a 10-6 victory.
After suffering tough losses to Bountiful and Clearfield, Duran knew the 9-7 Pirates needed to right the ship immediately.
“We need to play like we did in the beginning of the season,” Duran said. “We’re a talented team that needs to live up to our abilities.”
Sophomore Kinsey Robinson pitched for the Pirates in her first start of the year and got into trouble in the second.
East scored three runs to tie the game. After Robinson loaded the bases, Duran knew the situation could quickly get out of hand. Calling time, Duran went to the mound to calm the rookie pitcher.
“I told her that you got a lot of help behind you,” Duran said. “Just throw your best pitch, and we’ll make the out.”
Robinson’s next pitch was a grounder to Duran, who threw the runner out at first.
“It’s not hard to lead these girls,” Duran said. “We’re real comfortable with each other.”
Duran’s leadership is not just in the dugout but also at the plate. In the top of the third inning with a runner at first, Duran worked a full count against East freshman Tiffany Hoogestraat. Fouling off two balls, Duran connected on a low fastball and drove it over the left field wall.
“I was in a slump,” Duran said. “I was trying to get my pitch and hit it like I did at the beginning of the season.”
It was her seventh home run of the season.
Robinson left the game in the third after twisting her ankle beating out a throw to first for a single. In relief was sophomore Celeste Castelan, who threw four strikeouts and gave up only one walk.
“It was a team effort to beat East,” Castelan said.
Castelan held the Leopards to only one run.
With the end of the season quickly approaching and the playoff picture still up in the air, Cyprus coach Greg Hansen was happy to see his team come away with the victory.
“These rubber matches are really important for us,” Hansen said. “We can either take second in this division or not even make the playoffs.”
Storylines Cyprus rights the ship
R East freshman Tiffany Hoogestraat pitched a complete game with three strikeouts and walking only four.
• Cyprus sophomore Kinsey Robinson helped her cause by going 2-for2 with a standing triple and a walk.
• Senior Felicia Duran will be playing college softball at Colorado Northwestern Community College next season.