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Softball: El Camino Real wins City championship

May 30, 2012 |  7:40 pm

_5309235Senior Karyn Wright pitched a five-hitter with seven strikeouts and escaped a bases-loaded jam in the fourth inning to lead Woodland Hills El Camino Real to its 14th Los Angeles City Section title and first since 2005 with a 5-0 shutout of reigning champion Carson at UCLA.

It was the 90th career win for Wright, who is headed to Portland State. She was on the losing end of a 6-3 result against Carson in last year's final when El Camino Real made six errors. This time, they had only three and none of them proved costly as Wright tamed the Colts' feared lineup, led by Darian Tautalafua.

Tautalafua entered the game batting .490 with 17 home runs and 45 RBIs this season and her 53 career homers were tied for the most in state history with Crenshaw's Alia Williams, but Wright rendered her hitless with a steady diet of inside pitches.

"We sort of snuck up on her and pitched her inside, which is where she likes it," Wright said of her plan against Carson's slugger. "Sometimes you have to beat someone on their own strength."

Brittany Moeai pitched a five-hitter with four strikeouts and four walks and did not allow a hit until McKenna Arriola's infield single with one out in the fifth inning. However, three errors proved to be the undoing for the top-seeded Colts (25-6).   

"I thought we were good enough to win last year, we just didn't make the plays," El Camino Real Coach Lori Chandler said. "This year was all about dealing with adversity, being mentally tough, and we made the plays when we had to."

The second-seeded Conquistadores (27-5) scored two runs in the third inning, one in the fifth and two more in the seventh. 

-- Steve Galluzzo 

Photo: Pitcher Karyn Wright throws a strike in El Camino Real's 5-0 victory over Carson in the City championship game at UCLA. Credit: Steve Galluzzo / For The Times