Naya Campos stepped up to the plate in the bottom of the seventh inning with two outs and one runner on Tuesday and the Dorado senior delivered on a home run to the opposite field to send the game against Sunnyside to extra innings. The Blue Devils scored all six of their runs in the top of the third and Canyon del Oro slowly chipped away at that lead but darkness forced a suspension of the game after ten full innings of play.
According to article (18.104.22.168.1), a regular season contest may not result in a tie and the protocols call for a completion at a later date. It is unclear if this will be the path taken by both squads since Sunnyside competes in the 5A Conference and Canyon del Oro competes in the 4A Conference.
The game started out with a tribute to longtime youth and high school umpire and referee Tom Carle who is retiring from softball and baseball work after 48 years of service.
“I think back to Sam Borozan and I remember with him his biggest thing was paying it forward,” Carle reflected on the inspiration he received from another longtime referee in his friend who passed away in 2019 at the age of 90. “I noted that he helped so many people in so many different ways and a lot of people helped me a long time ago to get where I am and I want to sustain that. I’ve never forgotten that.”
Carle will continue to teach umpiring skills to others and help in the evaluation of umpires and referees in the future and mentor others in hopes of passing his knowledge on like Borozan did for him.
Carle started umpiring Bobby Sox level in 1974 and he never looked back with successful stints as a softball and baseball umpire and a volleyball referee. An injury he sustained a couple of years ago on the diamond made his decision to retire an easy one but he will continue to work volleyball games.
“I’m not done with officiating, but my health won’t allow me to do softball anymore,” Carle added. “I can’t run and I can’t take a chance of taking another hit to the chest. I took a fall tip in a baseball game and it killed a nerve in my chest four years ago and it took a while to figure out what the problem was until about two years ago. I couldn’t walk from my truck to the field.”
Carle has the distinction of umpiring Canyon del Oro softball coach Kelly Fowler in Bobby Sox games in 1974 and he has worked the games of hundreds of athletes since then. He promises he will find a way to get back on the diamond if the game between the Dorados and the Blue Devils is finished this spring.
Sunnyside is 3-3 in power-ranking games with the initial set of rankings set to be released next Tuesday, March 29 and Canyon del Oro is 4-0.
The Blue Devils sent 10 batters to the plate in the top of third inning with Tatiana Solano leading things off with a single and Natalya Rivera drew a walk one out later. Tatyana Vega followed with an RBI double, Amerika Lopez came up with a 2-RBI double, Lauryn Carbajal hit an RBI double and Briannay Galvez walked. Gracie Ayala delivered on a 2-run double to end the scoring for Sunnyside.
Destanee Nez got the start for the Dorados and Amelia Streuber came in during the third. Streuber only gave up two hits over the next seven innings of work and she shutdown the last five batters she faced to preserve the tie.
Bella Porter knocked in a run for the Dorados in the bottom of the fourth to cut the lead down to 6-1 and a 2-RBI single from Megan Clark and an RBI from Campos made it 6-4 after five innings of work. Clark singled with two outs in the bottom of the seventh and that lead to the tying home run from Campos. Porter opened up the bottom of the eight with a single but Vega held firm and she only gave up one single the rest of the way for the Blue Devils.
Canyon del Oro hosts Sahuarita (3-2) on Thursday and Sunnyside travels to Walden Grove (0-5) on Friday.
Andy Morales was recognized by the AIA as the top high school reporter in 2014, he was awarded the Ray McNally Award in 2017, a 2019 AZ Education News award winner and he has been a youth, high school and college coach for over 30 years. He was the first in Arizona to write about high school beach volleyball and high school girls wrestling. His own children have won multiple state high school championships and were named to all-state teams. Competing in hockey, basketball, baseball and track & field in high school, his unique perspective can only be found here and on AZPreps365.com. Andy is the Southern Arizona voting member of the Ed Doherty Award, recognizing the top football player in Arizona, and he was named a Local Hero by the Tucson Weekly for 2016. Andy was named an Honorary Flowing Wells Caballero in 2019, became a member of the Sunnyside Los Mezquites Cross Country Hall of Fame in 2021 and he was a member of the Amphi COVID-19 Blue Ribbon Committee and he earned a Distinguished Service Award from Amphitheater. Contact Andy Morales at firstname.lastname@example.org