SAN BENITO — Sophomore Sarah Garcia hit a three-run home run and senior ace Diandra Padilla pitched a complete game shutout, leading San Benito to a 10-0 win in six innings over Harlingen High on Tuesday night.
With the win, the Lady Hounds wrapped up the regular season at 12-2 in District 32-6A play and sealed up the second seed behind Weslaco.
The Lady Hounds will have to wait and see who their bi-district opponent will be. The race is between Edinburg Vela and PSJA Memorial, who are in the final two spots in District 31-6A.
“Now we have about a week and a half off. I told the kids it’s important to finish strong and work hard,” said San Benito coach Kristy Leal. “From here until we start the playoffs, we need to stay focused and continue to get better.”
Padilla got San Benito on the board in the bottom of the first inning on a two-run double, making it an early 2-0 San Benito lead. Padilla, meanwhile, struck out six while scattering seven hits.
Padilla got into trouble in the top of the fourth inning. After allowing back-to-back base hits, Harlingen managed to load the bases with two outs, trailing by three runs. However, Padilla forced a ground out to get out of the inning unscathed and kept the Lady Cards scoreless.
“She’s my senior; that’s my leader,” said Leal of Padilla. “She did a great job on senior night; she did a great job of getting out of a couple jams. She took care of business tonight. I’m proud of her.”
San Benito’s offense began to click with back-to-back three-run frames. In the bottom of the fourth, Garcia extended the lead to 5-0 with one swing of the bat. Garcia finished the night 1 for 3 and has now hit homers in consecutive games.
In the bottom of the sixth inning, San Benito continued to swing away. Audrey Huerta laced in a two-run double making it an 8-0 lead. Huerta would later score on an errant throw that capped off the three-run inning.
San Benito finished the night with 11 hits. Huerta went 2 for 3 with two runs scored, Padilla finished 2 for 3, and Sophomore Alina Jasso wound up with a stellar 3 for 4 night at the plate.
“One thing I told the kids was that we had to shut the door,” Leal said. “Harlingen kept the ball in play and had runners on. After that, we strung some hits together and managed to get some runs on the board.”