Softball: Ironwood Ridge & San Manuel to play for championshipsby Andy Morales on May. 11, 2013, under Sports
San Manuel will play Northwest Christian for the D-IV championship on Saturday night. It will be the 13th championship appearance for the school dating back to their first title in 1977.
Former TUSD athletic director Sheila Baize coached seven title games and won five of them before passing the torch over to Jeff Rupright. Rupright won two titles in five tries.
This will be Deanne Brewer’s first chance at a title for the Miners. The game will take place on Saturday night and will be shown on aia365.com.
1994 Jeff Rupright win
1991 Jeff Rupright
1990 Jeff Rupright win
1987 Jeff Rupright
1986 Jeff Rupright
1984 Sheila Baize
1983 Sheila Baize
1982 Sheila Baize win
1981 Sheila Baize win
1980 Sheila Baize win
1979 Sheila Baize win
1977 Sheila Baize win
Randy Anway will make his third final appearance in five years after he takes on the top-seeded Sunrise Mountain team on Monday night at ASU (aia365.com Fox Sports tape delay).
As first explained here, this will be Anway’s final season with the Nighthawks so the final game will surely be something to see. On the other side, Jody Pruitt was an All-American catcher at Arizona during the Susie Parra era (1993).
Also on that list were Jamie Heggen, Laura Espinoza (Watson) and Amy Chellevold. Current Salpointe coach Stacy Redondo (Schulte) was part of the 1993 championship team and an All-CWS selection.
Pruitt will be coaching her third final appearance (2004 and 2012) on Monday for Sunrise Mountain although the team won in 2006, 2008 and 2009 while Pruitt took a break from coaching the team.
To get past Greenway, the Nighthawks relied on the long ball with Robyn Porter hitting a three-run shot, Alex Rapp hitting a two-run home run and Erin Rocker bringing in another two-run home run.
Rapp’s and Rocker’s home runs came with two out in the bottom of the sixth to put Ironwood Ridge over the top and into the final.
2011 Randy Anway
2009 Randy Anway
Empire came into the D-III playoffs as the top seed but the Ravens also came with a lot of emotional baggage.
Espinoza-Watson resigned in early April and the team was taken over by interim coach Shannon Woolridge. The team also lost their standout short stop in the process. Even with all that, the team marched on through the playoffs until they met Estrella Foothills.
Estrella Foothills knocked Empire out of the playoffs last year and the year before. Although both Empire and Estrella Foothills will remain in D-III next year, they will be joined by larger schools such as Nogales. Many felt this was the perfect time for the Ravens to breakthrough before the realignment in divisions takes place.
The team is loaded with standouts who will be returning such as Brittany Woolridge, Kelsey Smith, Tazia Hernandez, Kaelyn Smith and Gracie Tabor.
ELIMINATION BRACKET: Friday, May 10
4 Ironwood Ridge beat 7 Greenway, 7-5
CHAMPIONSHIP: Monday, May 13: ASU
4 Ironwood Ridge vs. 1 Sunrise Mountain, 5:30 pm
SEMIFINALS: Friday, May 10
1 Empire lost to 5 Estrella Foothills, 2-1
SEMIFINALS: Friday, May 10
2 San Manuel beat 14 Miami, 3-2
CHAMPIONSHIP: Saturday, May 11: Rose Mofford
2 San Manuel vs. 1 NW Christian, 5:30 pm