Brazoswood provided Alvin with plenty of regular season fits during the two teams’ two-plus decades of playing in the same district.
However, the Lady Yellowjackets have returned the favor with broom domination over their long-time county rival during the postseason.
Alvin got a pair of solid pitching performances by junior Jodie Aguirre, along with timely hitting on the offensive side to sweep the Lady Bucs by 4-0 and 3-1 scores in the best-of-three Class 6A Bi-District Softball Playoff series Thursday and Friday.
The Lady Jackets (29-5) move on to meet Pasadena Memorial in a best-of-three area round playoff series this week after sweeping B’wood in the playoffs for the second time in four years and third time since 2008.
Game one will be played on Wednesday in Alvin at 6:30 p.m., while the second game will be played on Thursday at the Pasadena ISD Sports Complex at 6:30 p.m. Coaches from both teams met on Monday (after the Advertiser went to press) to flip for the location, site and time for the third-and-deciding game (if necessary).
With her two victories in the circle against B’Wood last weekend, Aguirre also broke the Alvin pitching mark for victories in a single season with 29. Amber Anderson won 28 games for the Lady Jackets in 2007.
“It’s always good when you can get a sweep of Brazoswood and do it in the playoffs,” Alvin head coach David McCorkle said following the game. “We have a lot of kids, who haven’t had a playoff win since we’re so young. It’s also been a couple of years (since Alvin has won in the postseason).
“Jodie has obviously been a blessing for us. She has been waiting in the shadows behind Rachel (Hertenberger). She’s a perfect example of what we want in our program. There are kids who aren’t necessarily starting right now, but they’re ready.”
While surrendering seven hits and working out of a few jams in the series opener in Alvin on Thursday, Aguirre made the key pitches when she had to, fanning eight and allowing only two walks.
The junior also helped her own cause with a second-inning RBI single to score Mary Pourcio from second base, while the Lady Jackets added three insurance tallies in the fifth and sixth frames combined.
Khori Bolton reached base on a B’wood error to start the fifth and after being bunted over in consecutive at-bats by Chloe Foster and outfielder Mindy Matthews, Bolton trotted home on Shae Montemayor’s opposite-field single into left-center field for a 2-0 Alvin lead.
Montemayor then stole second base and when the errant throw by the Lady Bucs’ catcher deflected off Montemayor into shallow center field, the junior dashed all the way to the plate standing up for the Lady Jackets’ third run.
Victoria Valdez’s one-out double and another Lady Buc miscue paved the way for Alvin padding the margin to 4-0 in the bottom of the sixth, while the Lady Jackets’ catcher helped Aguirre work around two B’wood base runners in the seventh.
Valdez threw out Lady Bucs’ pitcher Brooke Tanner trying to steal second base and later snagged a game-ending foul pop near the backstop netting off Amberly Phillips’ bat.
In game two on Friday in Clute, the Lady Jackets appeared to be in trouble early with Ella Casas’ first-inning RBI double promptly putting B’wood in front at 1-0, while Tanner held Alvin hitless through the first three innings with the ball not even leaving the infield.
Clarissa Barron ultimately took away Tanner’s momentum, though, with the senior shortstop crushing a solo homer off the left-field foul pole with out in the fourth and Alvin then took the upper hand for good in the fifth.
“I was just looking for a pitch I could get on top of,” Barron said. “I was a little frustrated with myself, because I started off rough in the first game. I was looking for a pitch to hit to really help my team.”
McCorkle: “We changed our approach at the plate (Thursday night) in about the third inning and then went to another look tonight in the second. They (B’wood) were starting to come in today. They were going away and out the first game. We crowded the plate and tried to take that away from them. They’re well coached over there.”
Another two-bagger by Valdez ignited the go-ahead rally for Alvin in the fifth.
Aguirre reached on an error at short, moving courtesy runner Evany Gonzalez over to third base.
Foster then punched a single into left-center field to plate Gonzalez and when the throw to third skipped into the B’wood dugout, courtesy runner Jordyn Frederic was awarded home, as well, to give Alvin the two-run cushion at 3-1.
The Lady Jackets then used a brilliant sliding catch by Matthews in right to end the sixth and with a Lady Bucs’ runner at first with two outs in the seventh, Aguirre (three hits, seven K’s, two walks) whiffed pinch hitter Nadiah Celedon on a rise ball to complete the sweep for Alvin.