Pacifica’s red-hot softball team roared into the CIF-SS Division 1 quarterfinals with an 11-0 win over Murrieta Tuesday afternoon.
The Mariners won their 18th straight game in the second round contest and will next face Orange Lutheran High.
Now 26-5, Pacifica jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the top of the first inning and never looked back, scoring in each inning except the sixth. They rattled 19 hits around the diamond at Murrieta played error-free ball.
Rebecca Lee continued her strong performance at the plate, going 4-for-4 with three home runs including a grand slam; she finished with nine RBIs. Nicole DeWitt was also impressive, going 3-for-3 with a walk and a stolen base.
All that power backed up another stellar pitching performance by Kaylee Carlson, who struck out 12 batters in just five innings. She gave up just two hits and one walk.
Carlson is now 18-0 on the season.
Katya Duvall came on in the sixth to finish the game, yielding just one hit and striking out two batters.
The Mariners began the season ranked number one in the state, but struggled a bit in the early going. Since then they’ve combined powerful hitting (a team batting average of .343 with an on-base average of .419) with deft pitching (a team earned run average of 0.99).
Empire League rival Yorba Linda also advanced to the quarterfinals. The Mustangs are in the other bracket, which means the two teams could meet again in the finals. That would be good news for Pacifica, since the M’s have defeated Yorba Linda three times this season.
Semifinal games will be played next Tuesday, with the title game played next Friday or Saturday (May 31 or June 1) at Barber Park in Irvine.