Softball’s home run season makes history

May 31, 2017 — by Stephen Ding and Neil Rao

Assistant softball coach Mike Davey watched from the dugout as his daughter, senior pitcher Rachel Davey, took the mound for her final high school game on May 23 in the girls’ softball CCS semifinal against Hillsdale. The team’s 3-1 defeat to the Fighting Knights marked the last time he would coach his daughter after years of coaching basketball and softball for Rachel and her sister, 2015 alumna Samie.

Despite the tight — and controversial — loss to Hillsdale, the Falcons probably never envisioned going this far this season, and Rachel was one of the keys to the Falcons’ surprising season of success.

They finished atop the El Camino league and were seeded seventh in CCS Division II. Their run to the semifinals was one of the best finishes in recent school history.

Despite starting with the team’s only run scored by freshman Morgan Woolley, the game remained tense and tight. In the end, the girls attributed their loss in large part to a bad call by an umpire that allowed two runs to score for the Fighting Knights. The girls finished the year with an overall record of 19-6.

To get to the semis, the team upset second-seeded Carmel High on May 20 in Salinas. Trailing 4-2 in the sixth inning, the girls surged forward with a clutch hit from junior Kate Bossi to tie the game. The team then began to gain momentum as a double by junior Eryn Lee and singles from Davey and junior Chancee Gaskin led the team to a 7-4 win. Senior Natasha Ramakrishnan also sparked the team with a solid double to come back from being down 2-0.

“[Our game against Carmel] wasn’t exactly a turning point, more like it was us proving to ourselves that we could play on that level and beat a higher seeded team,” Lee said. “We went into that game not expecting to win and yet we still played hard and worked as a team.”

Lee credits the team’s success this year to a lack of true star players. Rather, Lee said that they worked together as a group.  

And achieving this success came as a surprise. That’s because pitching was an unknown in February after to the loss of star pitcher Eleni Spirakis to graduation last year.

“We lost Eleni last year but, [Rachel] this year has been tough as nails,” Ramakrishnan said. “She has pitched almost every single game and has done a great job.”

Ramakrishnan also attributed their unexpected success to their support of each other in tight games.

Ending the season so strongly, the girls are hoping to do well next year despite the loss of key seniors such as Davey and Ramakrishnan.

“I think, as a team, we will carry this past year's faith for our skills and teammates,” freshman Ella Parr said. “We all really support each other, and that will definitely carry on into this coming season and we will carry the leadership onto the seniors coming in, which will help us continue the softball success.”