STOCKTON — Marissa Fabian produced a big hit in a city that will be her new home for the next four years.
The former Lodi High softball player and her North teammates looked like they were going to crank up their offensive muscles in the 29th annual High School All-Star Baseball-Softball Classic, with the softball game played at Delta College’s diamond on Friday. But the South held on to post a 9-6 win over the North.
Fabian was one of three Lodi-area high school softball players, all of whom graduated in recent weeks, taking part in the all-star classic that went nine innings. Fabian’s Lodi teammate Danielle Pfennig pitched and played first base, and Elliot Christian shortstop Bailey Correia also played first base and scored one of the North’s runs.
The South led 9-2 as it entered the top of the ninth. Correia led off with a walk and stole second base. Correia continued her base-stealing ways by taking third base and touched home plate on a throwing error for a 9-3 score.
Then Fabian, who recently won Lodi High’s Melby Award for best senior female athlete, took an outside pitch and sent it over the right-center fence for a solo home run to trim down the South’s lead to 9-4.
“I was just having fun,” Fabian said. “I’ve been working on (hitting) outside.”
The final inning was exciting for Fabian, Correia and their North teammates.
“I’ve played a lot of these girls in travel ball; played against them,” Fabian said.
Fabian played center field and first base in the contest.
“I haven’t played it since middle school,” laughed Fabian. “It was just fun.”
The North, who were the visitors, crossed two more runs across home plate in the inning, thanks to a walk to Franklin’s Selena Perez, who scored on Calaveras’ Jordyn Okumura double. Lincoln’s Ariana Riojas, who singled earlier in the inning, scored on a South throwing error with two outs. But the South managed to get the final out on an infield pop-fly for the win.
The North held a short-lived 1-0 lead after one inning. But the South tied the game in the bottom of the third, and took a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the fourth inning when East Union of Manteca’s scored on Sonora’s Paige Houch single.
In the bottom of the fifth, the South scored two more times for a 4-1 lead. The North made it 4-2 in the top of the seventh, but the South responded with three more runs for a 7-2 lead. A double and pass ball gave the South a 9-2 score in the bottom of the eighth.
Pfennig pitched a combined three innings in which she struck out two South batters. In three at-bats, Correia singled and flew out the second time.
This fall, Fabian will be attending University of the Pacific and will be on the college’s softball team. She made her decision in May.
“It’s a good fit for me,” said Fabian, who is planning to major in business/sports management. “It was too good of a deal to pass up.”
Fabian weighed other options in terms of colleges. That included University of California, Santa Barbara. She was a four-year starter at guard on the Lodi High girls basketball team and played in the Lodi volleyball program.
Correia and Pfennig will also be playing college softball after Friday’s game. Correia will be attending Holy Names University in Oakland, an NCAA Division II college, on a scholarship. Pfenning will be attending Cosumnes River College in Sacramento, and playing on the college’s softball team.
Contact Mike Bush at email@example.com. Follow on Twitter: @MBushLodiSports.