The Pima Community College men’s golf team closed out play in the NJCAA National Championship on May 15 at the Sand Creek Golf Course in Newton, Kan. with a 14th-place team finish.
The Aztecs climbed two spots in the team standings after the final round and finished with a four-day total of 1217.
Freshman David Rauer finished tied for 25th place in the individual standings with a four-day score of 298. Freshman Frankie Wu had three birdies in the final round as he finished with a three-under par 69. He ended up tied for 32nd with a total of 300.
Sophomore Anthony Moncada and freshmen Will Dennis and Aaron Ramonett each finished tied for 84th with a score of 323.
Compiled from a press release.
The Pima Community College women’s golf team finished in 14th place in the 15-team field at the NJCAA National Championship at the Longbow Golf Course in Mesa from May 11-14.
The team never found its groove, finishing the first day near the bottom of the leaderboard with a team score of 370, more than 60 shots from the top. The team finished the tourney with a score of 1502.
Sophomore Paige Valles finished in 33rd place with a 334, the lowest individual score for an Aztec. She was named Second Team All-Region for her regular season performance.
Freshman Rachel Blount took 69th with an overall score of 367, while freshman Carley Nelson shot a 403. Freshman Casey Morinelli had a 410 and freshman Jessica Nordby finished with a 416.
Tiffany Chan from Daytona State College finished at the top with an individual score of 288, and Seminole State won the team competition with a combined score of 1204. Mesa CC finished in third with a team score of 1267.
Contains information from a press release.
By CALEB FOSTER
The Pima Community College baseball team (24-27, 17-23 in ACCAC) ended its season being swept on the road against Chandler-Gilbert Community College on April 25.
The Aztecs found it increasingly difficult at the end of the season to grind out wins as they lost 12 of their last 15 games.
The Aztecs dropped their first game as Chandler-Gilbert rallied late for a 10-8 win.
Down by three in the fourth, sophomore Trey Stine scored sophomore Devin Harrison on a single and freshman Ryan Ramsower scored on an error to bring the Aztecs within one.
Harrison belted a double in the fifth, which scored sophomore Jaquese Moore to tie the game at 7-7.Ivan Estrella followed that up with an RBI single to score Harrison and give Pima the lead.
Pima was unable to put any more runs as Chandler-Gilbert scored three unanswered runs to nab the late-game win.
Freshman Vinnie Tarantola (4-5) pitched two and two-third innings giving up three runs as he produced two strikeouts and three walks.
The Aztecs struck early in the second game but after the first inning they went silent on offense in the 3-2 loss.
Tarantola hit a two-run RBI single in the first inning, allowing Pima to jump out to an early lead. Stine and Ramsower scored on the play.
After the first inning, Pima’s offense became nonexistent. They finished the game with only two more hits.
Chandler-Gilbert scored late in the game, scoring in the seventh and eighth innings.
Sophomore Chris Kucko (5-7) took the loss while pitching a complete game. He gave up three runs and produced six strikeouts and three walks.
Although they missed the postseason Moore a center fielder for the Aztecs gained recognition as a nominee for the ACCAC Division II Golden Glove Award.
Moore, who played in 51 games made only two errors this season. He recorded 124 put-outs and added six assists to his defensive resume.
He was dominant running bases for the Aztecs with a team high 18 steals. Moore finished the season with a .338 batting average, producing 16 RBIs for his team.
By ALFRED DICOCHEA III
Freshman Jahnessa Mackey came to Pima Community College from Amphitheater High School for one reason, to play tennis.
Thanks to head coach Gretchen Schantz, she now plays for the women’s team.
“That’s what actually brought me, is tennis,” Mackey said. “I went to talk to the coach one day, just to say I want to play tennis here.”
Schantz is glad for the addition of Mackey to the team.
“It was a good decision,” Schantz said laughing. “Good job, coach. Good choice!”
Mackey finished the season 8-0 at the No. 6 spot for Pima, with a win at the Regional I tournament. Mackey’s undefeated season played a big part in Pima’s turnaround this year, which lead to a Regional I title.
“Everybody kind of won or lost at different places, and she was our one constant win all season in singles,” Schantz said.
Mackey made sacrifices to reach her success, even switching her major in order to play tennis.
She was doing modeling work and majoring in fashion until she made the switch to business.
“I had to change my major recently to business because the other fashion classes wouldn’t fit in to my tennis schedule,” she said.
At the start of the season, Mackey wasn’t in the lineup but her hard work caught the eyes of Schantz and her fellow teammates.
Sophomore Ema Hernandez, Pima’s No. 4 singles player, said she recognized Mackey’s potential from the first time she saw her on the court.
“When I first saw Jahnessa, I knew she was really tough,” Hernandez said. “She’ll go for everything, she’s really constant, and she’s a fighter. She’s very patient, she waits for the right ball and she knows how to execute really well.”
Mackey’s honors include an undefeated singles season, first-team singles and second-team doubles All-ACCAC honors and being a member of the 2015 Regional I championship team.
Can she repeat next year?
She doesn’t hesitate to answer. “Yeah, definitely.”
By DEANNA SHERMAN
As we say goodbye to the scholastic 2014-15 year at Pima Community College, let’s not forget about the athletes who made this year special and also introduce the student athletes we have to look forward to next year.
Pima men’s basketball players Matt O’Boyle and Esteban Lopez are continuing their collegiate careers after signing national letters of intent to four-year institutions.
O’Boyle was a star guard and forward for the Aztecs this season, playing and starting 29 of 31 games. He averaged 14.8 points and 4.2 rebounds per game.
He was recognized for his outstanding season as he was selected Third Team All-ACCAC and Second Team All-Region I, Division II. He was also named ACCAC Division II Player of the week for Feb. 9-15.
O’Boyle committed to Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C., on April 21.
Lopez, signed with Hastings College in Hastings, Neb.
After an exciting season, the PCC’s women’s soccer team is saying goodbye to three outstanding players. Shannon Shields, Sarah Dunbar and Kathy Fisher all signed national letters of intent to continue their careers at a four-year institution.
Star forward Shields signed to play at the University of Arkansas in Little Rock.
Shields was named a NJCAA and NSCAA First Team All-American and was honored as the ACCAC Conference Player of the Year this season.
Dunbar, a midfielder, will move on to Eastern Oregon University in La Grande, Ore. She was selected Second Team All-ACCAC and scored four goals for the Aztecs this season.
Fisher, who was not only a forward for the Aztecs soccer team but also a hurdler on the track and field squad, signed with Queens University in Charlotte, N.C.
The women’s soccer season will start in August.
Incoming talent abounds
Next year’s basketball season will show a lot of change as a high number of incoming freshmen venture to Pima to prove their talents at the collegiate level.
Men’s basketball will bring in nine freshmen, all Arizona natives. The Aztecs will have quite a variety at the guard positions with Jorge Carrasco, Brandon Burke, Jake Anastasi, Kale Abbot, Dakota Kordsiemon and Leonard Moody.
DJ Luan and Blake Staggs have played both the guard and forward position while Daren Biggs is a strong-set forward.
The women’s basketball team will also be stacked with incoming freshmen as the Aztecs bring in seven players.
Tucson natives Bailey Johnson, Sydni Stallworth, Piper Mali, Alondra Leon and Erin Peterson will become Aztecs next season. Taylor Blue from Peoria and Nevada resident Aubre Fortner will also be added to the roster.
By ALFRED DICOCHEA III
Pima Community College’s Men’s Tennis (2-6, 0-6 in ACCAC) finished its season in Glendale at the Regional I tournament.
In the first day of the Regional I tournament on April 21, Pima was only able to advance two players to the second day of matches.
Sophomores Josh Henkel and Francisco Ton won their respected singles matches to advance. Pima was shut out in doubles matches. In the second day of the Region I Tournament on April 22 Ton fell in his No. 3 singles match and Henkel lost his No. 4 singles match.
Pima fell short to qualify for the NJCAA National Tournament. The top three teams in the region qualified for Nationals. Pima was tied for third, but lost out in the tiebreaker against Glendale to advance.
Pima Community College Women’s Tennis team (9-8, 6-2 in ACCAC) won their second Region I Championship in program history; first since 2012. Pima wrapped up the regular season winning five of heir last six leading into their Region I Tournament victory in Glendale.
Pima’s season ended on the second day of NJCAA National Tournament on May 4. The Aztecs had a clean sweep in the first day of the NJCAA National Tournament on May 3 advancing in all matches. Pima’s second day went differently, as they got swept in round of 16 ending their season.
In the first day of the Region I Tournament on April 21, Pima won out in their singles matches. Freshmen Noelle Karp had to fight to win her singles match. She won a three set match that lasted over three hours.
In the second round of the Region I Tournament on April 22, the Aztecs sealed the win with 19 points winning by a margin of four. They took home four individual titles.
Sophomores Cristina Oropeza and Yani Alameda both won singles titles. Oropeza won the No. 2 singles title, while Alameda won the No.3 singles title. Freshmen Stephanie Nickles and Jahnessa Mackey took home the No. 3 doubles title.
Coach Gretchen Schantz is coming off her second Region I Championship win of her career.
Schantz thinks her current team is a little more constant then the one in 2012.
“This team by far was a full team experience, every single person got to every single final and that’s why we won it. We didn’t win it by draws; we won by being a more consistent team.” She said.
Pima is bringing back four All ACCAC players next season in Karp, sophomore Ema Hernandez, Nickles and Mackey.
Pima had its share of postseason honors as everyone made the all-conference team.
Karp won Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s (ITA) Player To Watch Award for Region II.
By TANISHA KNUTZEN
Everyone should play sports because these games are a teacher of many life lessons that can provide an advantage in the real world.
Being part of a sports team can show a player the importance of learning rules, being a team player, having a competitive mind-set and the power of time management. It’s a classroom that offers hands-on lessons, all while playing a beloved game of ball.
Anyone who has played sports understands the discipline that goes into having a winning season, as well as the feelings of loss.
Sports are important in the building of a personal empire. Through the wins and losses, an athlete is provided with the valuable lesson of hard work.
The wins teach a player what that hard work and dedication can bring, while the losses create an opportunity for change.
These kinds of lessons give athletes an advantage in life because they know what it takes to come out on top. They understand the balance between work, school and practice is hard but they’ve learned how to properly juggle these life opponents with a sense of ease.
It might seem like just a game to people who have never played but for those that have dedicated their time, it’s much more than just a pastime, it’s a lifestyle.
Sports creates well-rounded people.
Athletes are the kind of people who wake up early in the morning for two-a-day practices, eat healthy to keep up with weigh-ins, work hard to keep up with grades and know how to manage their time between everything in between.
With so many hours dedicated to practicing and playing a sport, an athlete doesn’t have a large window of time for miscellaneous activities such as drinking and partying.
Without alternate life distractions, an athlete is on a positive track forward, on and off the field.
Being an athlete opens many doors and creates platforms of success from the start of a player’s career to the end. The life of an athlete screams success, hard work and dedication.
By WILL WILLCOXSON
The Pima Community College men and women’s track and field teams took home three Region I Championship titles on May 5 at Mesa Community College. The men’s team scored 65 points on the day and the women’s team finished with 66.
Sophomore Kaysee Pilgrim earned her Region I Championship title with a jump of 5 feet, 9 1/4 inches in the high jump event. The win improved on her score from last year’s regionals where she placed second.
Freshman Jamie Holliday jumped into first place with a jump of 18 feet, 8 inches as she hit the qualifying mark for national in the long jump event. She came in sixth place in the high jump event.
Sophomore David Stiles grabbed a Region I Championship title in javelin throw with a toss of 160 feet. He also placed fifth in long jump with a jump of 21 feet, 3 1/4 inches.
The 4×800 women’s relay team took second place with a time of 9 minutes, 46.67 seconds. The performance earned sophomore Sarrah Boughan, freshman Shalise Fernander, freshman Desire Montenegro and sophomore Raelene Yocupicio a spot at the national competition.
The men’s 4×800 also came in second place with a time of 7 minutes 53.16 seconds. Freshman Amanuel Logo, freshman Ahmed Mohamed, freshman Hugo Nieves and sophomore Cruz Rodriguez also qualified for nationals with the performance.
The Pima Community College track team returned home from San Diego with three more national qualifiers set at the Triton Invitational, April 24-25.
Sophomore Andrew Lee set a national qualifying mark in the pole vault with a vault of 14 feet and 8 inches.
Freshman Mark Bennett set a national qualifying record with a 15th place finish in the 5000 meter race. Bennett finished with 15 minutes and 20.49 seconds.
In the 5,000-meter race both Logo and sophomore Peter Gonzales improved on their national qualifiers.
Logo placed 13th and teammate Gonzales took 19th for the day.
In the women’s completion, freshman Meghan Sweeney set a national qualifier in the women high jump with a jump of 5-4.
The Aztecs will compete on May 14-16 at the NJCAA outdoor championships in Hutchinson, Kan.
By CALEB FOSTER
The Pima Community College women’s golf team wrapped up its regular season on April 28 at the South Mountain Invitational in Laveen.
Pima came in third place with a two-day score of 677 (334-343). Pima has come in third place five times this season ultimately finishing third overall in conference ranking.
Sophomore Paige Valles had her best performance of the season with a two-day score of 156 (79-77) placing her in a tie for seventh place.
Freshman Rachel Blount tied for 10th with a two-day score of 165 (83-82). Freshman Carly Nelson came in 14th with a score of 173 (83-90). Freshmen Casey Morinelli and Jessica Nordby finished in a tie for 17th with a score of 187.
Pima will compete in the NJCAA National Tournament in Mesa on May 10-15.
The Pima Community College men’s golf team solidified their hold on the Region I, Division I championship on the fourth day of the tournament.
Pima tied with Eastern Arizona College coming into the last day of the tournament the Aztecs pulled out a tournament best 285 team score for the day to claim the championship.
“I’m very happy with the way they played over the last four days,” Pima men’s golf coach Clark Rustand said in a press release. “They should be very proud of themselves and they saved the best round for last. To have four of the eight make All-Region is pretty fun.”
The Aztecs finished with a team score of 1180 (296-295-304-285). Eastern Arizona came in second and Scottsdale Community College finished in third place.
Freshman David Rauer came in second place tying his best score for the season shooting three under par 67. He finished with a score of 287 (73-68-79-67).
Freshman Frankie Wu finished in fourth place with a score of 296 (72-77-73-74).
The Aztecs will compete in the NJCAA National Tournament, which will be held at the Sand Creek Station Golf Course in Newton, Kan. on May 10-15.
By ADRIANNA BARRIENTEZ
The Pima Community College softball team (46-14) closed out its 2015 season on May 2 at Phoenix College.
The Aztecs fought hard in three games against Phoenix College but didn’t finish victorious.
Pima could not stop the Phoenix College offense in their 11-1 loss.
Sophomore Keona Hunter hit a triple in the previous at-bat.
Sophomore Alexis Alfonso finished the season with a 27-7 record.
In the second game, the Aztecs struck first but could not finish in the later innings.
Freshman Araceli Peralta scored a run off an error in the first inning and Alfonso had a solo home run in to give Pima the lead.
Alfonso went 1 for 3 with an RBI and a run scored.
Frehsman Kalynn Martinez was 1 for 2.
The Aztecs didn’t close the game out with the win.
Pima moved into the championship round after shutting out Phoenix College 7-0.
Alfonso pitched a complete-game giving up five hits with six strikeouts and three walks.
In the 4th inning Olivas hit an RBI double to score Fabing.
Sophomore Brianna Quiroz followed with a sacrifice-fly RBI to plate Alfonso.
Sophmore Jackie Hernandez and Fabing had back-to-back RBI hits to make it 4-0.
This was Pima’s first year playing in Division II. They went from 29-30 in 2014 to 46-14 in 2015.
Pima softball team played the first day of the Region I, Division II Tournament at Phoenix College May 1.
Peralta led off the inning with a single.Hernandez hit an RBI double to plate.
Alfonso’s three-run blast to right field won the game.
Pima responded when Fabing hit a three-run homer to tie the game. After Fabing’s homer Pima was up 8-3.
Alfonso went 2 for 3 with three RBIs and two runs scored.
Hernandez was 2 for 4 with two RBIs and three runs scored while Martinez was 3 for 5 with two runs.
Freshman Odalis Orduno went five innings giving up two runs on four hits with two strikeouts and one walk.
The Aztecs took a split against Arizona Western College at home April 25.
The Aztecs didn’t start well offensively as they lost the first game 6-1.
Fabing began the second inning and later scored on a double-play ball hit by freshman Sierra Cuestas to put Pima up.
Fabing was 1 for 1 with a run scored and two walks. Martinez went 1 for 3 with two doubles.
Alfonso pitched four innings giving up six runs on four hits with four walks.
Freshman Alexis Ayala threw the final two innings giving up one hit with one strikeout.
The Aztecs defeated Arizona Western in the second game 15-7 in six innings.
The Aztecs came right back with one run in the bottom half of the fourth to cut the lead.
In the fifth inning, sophomore Alyssa Montoya plated pinch runner freshman Morgan Engelhardt on a bunt single RBI.
Sophomore Keona Hunter and Hernandez hit back-to-back RBI singles to put Pima up 8-7.
Fabing’s grand slam would make it 12-7. Martinez went 5 for 5 with four runs scored and an RBI.
Hunter finished 4 for 5 with two RBIs and two runs scored.
Sophomore Ariana Murrieta hit a two-run RBI single in the 3rd inning and finished 2 for 4.
Hernandez was 2 for 4 with two RBIs and Montoya went 2 for 4 with an RBI and a run scored.
Ayala pitched two and one-third innings giving up three runs on three hits with one strikeout and one walk.
The Aztecs lost at Eastern Arizona College on Tuesday.
Alfonso got the win after giving up one run on five hits with three strikeouts and one walk. Pima won the first game 7-1.
Alfonso and Freshman Araceli Peralta each had RBI singles in the inning.
Peralta finished 2 for 4 with an RBI while Alfonso went 1 for 3 with an RBI and a run scored.
Freshman Christine Olivas contributed with RBIs and runs scored.
In the second game the Aztecs won with a blowout. Fabing hit a grand slam in the 4th inning.
Quiroz hit a two-run RBI single in the inning.
Ayala finished 2 for 2 with two RBIs while teammate Hernandez went 3 for 4 with an RBI, a run scored and a triple.
Ayala pitched four innings giving up one run on five hits with two strikeouts.
Orduno closed out the final inning and got three outs on four pitches.
Pima went from 29-30 in 2014 to 46-15.Peralta said, “All the 5:30 a.m. workouts to the long practices and the nights of team bonding were the best times of my life.”
By MICHAEL ANDERSON
The Men’s World Cup soccer tournament is the most popular sporting event in the world, and with good reason.
It is a true world championship, as soccer is played everywhere on the planet. Rabid fans the world over obsess over it, but this enthusiasm hasn’t extended to the Women’s World Cup. I’d like to see that change.
The Women’s World Cup, which is contested every four years, will be held in Canada this year. Twenty-four teams qualified for the tournament.
They are divided into six groups for round-robin play, with the top two in each group advancing to the knockout round.
The championship match will be held July 5 in Vancouver.
The U.S. team is in Group D with Sweden, Nigeria and Australia, whom they open up against June 8 in Winnipeg.
The Men’s World Cup Final is the world’s highest rated television programming, with recent editions approaching 1 billion viewers. Audiences for the Women’s World Cup are comparatively tiny, and this mystifies me.
The women players may not be as fast and strong or as rich and famous as their male counterparts, but that doesn’t matter.
They play with at least as much heart and their game can be just as compelling as the men’s. As a bonus for American fans, the United States team is arguably the best in the world.
What the women’s game lacks in raw athleticism, it makes up in skill, class and sportsmanship.
The women display a level of skill equal with the men and in their less athletic game, technical skill takes greater precedence. This emphasis on skill rather than power makes the flow of the women’s game very pleasing to the eye.
The women also behave much better on the pitch than the men. They argue less and commit fewer cheap shots.
They certainly don’t bite other players like Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez or punch referees like former Portuguese forward Joao Pinto.
In short, they display much better sportsmanship and respect for the officials and their opponents than the overpaid and coddled men do.
The biggest difference between the men and women is the propensity of the men to dive.
Some of the best male scorers fall down like they’ve been shot at the slightest hint of contact. They then grovel shamelessly on the ground, begging for a penalty to be called.
As soon as one is, they pop back up like nothing happened and go back to playing, unhindered by whatever non-existent injury they were just complaining about. It is utterly ridiculous.
The women, on the other hand, play with much more pride and much less theatrics.
Strong forwards like America’s Abby Wambach will run through even significant contact to get a scoring chance. Wambach is the leading scorer in international soccer history, men’s or women’s, with 178 goals.
When players like Wambach do get chopped down, they don’t whine incessantly. For the most part, they get up and play on. It is hard not to admire that attitude. The men sure could learn a little something from it.
The favorites for the tournament are the U.S. and Japan. The U.S. squad is led by Wambach, forward Alex Morgan, and goalkeeper Hope Solo.
Defending-champion Japan is led by team captain and inspirational leader Homare Sawa. Those teams squared off in a championship match for the ages in 2011.
As much as I wanted the U.S. to win, it was nice to see the Japanese players bring a little joy to their homeland, which had recently been hit by a devastating tsunami. Some of the players’ hometowns didn’t even exist anymore.
That match was also inspiring in that those teams like and genuinely respect each other, yet they battled like caged tigers.
The intensity was palpable, but when it was over they embraced one another in obvious displays of affection and respect. The world could learn a lot from those young women.
The 2015 Women’s World Cup begins June 6. It will be televised on the Fox family of networks and information about the event can be found at fifa.com/womensworldcup.
If you like to watch sports, but are fed up with overpaid brats, poor sportsmanship or any of the other ills that plague our sporting landscape, check out the Women’s World Cup. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
By CALEB FOSTER
The Pima Community College baseball team (24-25, 17-21 in ACCAC) has been on a slippery slope dropping 11 of their last 14 games. The Aztecs have found themselves fighting for the No. 4 spot one game behind Scottsdale Community College.
The Aztecs finally got a win as they split at Glendale Community College on April 1.
The Aztecs won the first game 7-1 with the help of freshman Ryan Ramsower who went 4 for 4 with six RBIs.
Freshman Daniel Tolano (3-3) thew seven strikeouts in the win giving up only one run.
Pima was unable to catch up in the second game as the fell 9-7.
Down 8-1 in the eighth sophomore Ruben Bracamontes hit a three-run homer to try and get the ball rolling for Pima.
Sophomore Trey Stine hit a RBI in the ninth but that was it for Pima as the next three batters struck out ending the game.
Freshman Justin Hammergren (4-4) took the loss pitching five innings and throwing three strikeouts and three walks.
The Aztecs gave up both games on the road during their doubleheader against Phoenix College on April 18th.
The first game ended in a 3-1 loss with the only run coming from a solo home run by Freshman Vinnie Tarantola.
Sophomore Chris Kucko (4-7) threw six innings with three strikeouts and two walks giving up three runs in the loss.
The second game was much more offense oriented as Pima’s rally late in the game but ultimately lost 11-9.
Tarantola helped to try and rally the Aztecs with a grand slam in the seventh. Tarantola went 1 for 2 with four RBIs. Freshman Al Cruz ended the game 3 for 4 with an RBI and three runs scored.
Sophomore Roy Aguirre (5-3) pitched the loss giving up nine run and throwing four strikeouts and four walks.
The Aztecs dropped their last home doubleheader of the regular season against Paradise Valley Community College on April 14.
Up early in the game the Aztecs let it slip away in the eighth to lose 5-4. Sophomore Trevor Johnson hit an early solo home run finishing the game 1 for 3.
Stine went 2 for 4 hitting an RBI single in the third.
Tolano threw five innings giving up three runs and producing five strikeouts. Kucko (4-6) closed out the game for the Aztecs taking the loss without a strikeout.
The second game slipped away from the Aztecs early on and kept sliding as the fell to Paradise Valley 14-1.
Johnson went 1 for 2 hitting Pima’s only RBI of the game. Sophomore Jaquese Moore finished 1 for 3 with a run scored.
Tarantola (4-4) gave up six runs on seven hits producing two strikeouts and two walks.
The Aztecs broke a six-game losing streak with a sweep at No. 3 Mesa Community College on April 11. Pima has won three of the four games they have played against Mesa.
The Aztecs took the first game with a 9-5 victory propelled by a strong fourth inning that produced seven runs.
Stine hit a solo home run in the fourth followed by a two run RBI single later in the game. Stine finished the game 3 for 3 with a run scored and four RBIs.
Hammergren (4-3) pitched five innings and grabbed the win for the Aztecs with five strikeouts and four walks.
Kucko closed out the game pitching the last one and one-third inning throwing one strikeout and one walk.
In the Aztecs’ second game they came back from a 4-1 deficit to win 6-4.
Down by three in the seventh Bracamontes hit a groundout RBI to get the Aztecs on track. Bracamontes finished 2 for 4 with two RBIs.
In the eighth Cruz hit a two-run RBI single to level the score followed Bracamontes RBI single to put Pima ahead.
Moore finished the inning with a RBI double to take the victory.
Tarantola (4-3) threw three and two-thirds innings giving up one run and throwing one strikeout and one walk.
Kucko finished his second game of the day earning the save as he pitched the last two innings giving up one hit and producing one strikeout.
April 25: @ Chandler-Gilbert CC, Chandler, noon
April 30-May 2: NJCAA Region 1 Playoffs, TBA, TBA
By ADRIANNA BARRIENTEZ
The Pima Community College softball team (41-11, 34-10 in ACCAC) looks to wrap up its season in contention against Phoenix College for the No. 1 spot going into the postseason.
The Aztecs lost on the road against Eastern Arizona College on April 21.
The first loss snapped a 14-game winning streak for the Aztecs and put an end to sophomore pitcher Alexis Alfonso’s 10 straight wins on the mound.
Alfonso was named ACCAC Division II Co-Pitcher of the Week for the week of April 13-19. She has been selected three times this season.
The Aztecs fell behind and rallied in the 6th inning but came up short in their 6-3 loss in the first game.
Down 4-1 in the 6th, the Aztecs cut into the lead when Alfonso hit a solo home run.
Later, sophomore Keona Hunter hit an RBI triple to cut it to 4-3.
Alfonso (25-4) suffered her first loss since Mar. 28 as she pitched six innings giving up six runs on six hits with seven strikeouts and five walks.
The Aztecs took an early lead but Eastern Arizona came back to win 10-2.
Freshmen Araceli Peralta and Kalynn Martinez scored the runs for Pima in the 3rd inning, both on errors.
Freshman Alexis Ayala suffered her first loss on the mound (3-1) as she pitched six innings giving up 10 runs with one strikeout and two walks.
Pima dominated in two very different games against Central Arizona College April 18 at the West Campus.
Alfonso threw a shutout for her 24th win of the season in Pima’s 8-0 win in six innings.
Freshman Sierra Cuestas went 3 for 4 with three RBIs and two runs scored.
Sophomore Taylor Fabing was 2 for 5 with four runs scored and an RBI.
The Aztecs dominated in the second game as they beat Central Arizona 13-5 in six innings.
Central Arizona got to Alfonso in the 1st inning as they took a 4-0 lead. Pima responded with two runs in the bottom half of the inning.
Sophomore Brianna Quiroz led off the 2nd inning with a solo home run.
With the Aztecs up 8-5 in the 4th, Ayala hit a two-run RBI single which was followed by freshman Christine Olivas’ RBI single to make it 10-5.
Alfonso went 3 for 3 with four RBIs while Martinez finished 3 for 4 with two RBIs and a run scored.
Pima won both games April 14 against El Paso Community College at the West Campus.
Alfonso threw a complete-game shutout in Pima’s 5-0 win in the first game. She gave up six hits with four strikeouts and one walk. Alfonso did work at the plate as well as she hit a solo home run in the 3rd inning.
Ayala, Hunter and freshman Araceli Peralta each scored a run in the inning. Martinez and Alfonso each went 1 for 3 with an RBI and a run scored.
The Aztecs got a boost from freshman Morgan Engelhardt in the 6th inning as they won the second game 5-3.
Down 3-2 in the 6th, Engelhardt hit a two-run RBI single to give Pima the lead for good.
Martinez followed with an RBI single of her own to drive in Engelhardt, who finished 1 for 2 with two RBIs and a run scored.
Ayala threw a complete-game giving up three runs on six hits with three strikeouts.
Pima gained another conference sweep on April 11 at Paradise Valley Community College.
The Aztecs fell behind early and rallied in the sixth inning to win the first game 4-2
Alfonso hit an RBI single to cut the lead in half.
Ayala followed with a three-run home run to give the Aztecs the lead for good.
Alfonso gave up two runs on six hits with seven strikeouts and two walks.
In their second game the Aztecs fell behind but rallied once again to win the 3-1.
Ayala hit a single and later scored on an error to tie the game. In the fifth inning, Hernandez hit a double and scored on sophomore Fabing’s RBI double.
Freshman Odalis Orduno pitched four innings giving up one run on five hits with four strikeouts and no walks.
Alfonso came in and picked up the save as she pitched the final three innings with no hits, two strikeouts and one walk.
The Aztecs earned a sweep at Chandler-Gilbert Community College on April 4.
In the first game the Aztecs scored two runs in the top of the 7th but had to hold off a rally in their 9-6 win.
Ayala hit an RBI single in the 2nd inning to put Pima on the board.
Cuestas hit a two-run RBI double in the 3rd inning as she finished 2 for 4 with two RBIs, a run scored and two doubles.
Hernandez went 3 for 5 with two RBIs and a run scored while Olivas finished 2 for 3 with an RBI and a run scored.
Pitcher Alfonso gave up six runs while pitching three strikeouts and three walks.
The Aztecs scored four runs in the 4th inning and went on to win the second game 9-3.
Fabing hit RBI triples in each the 1st and 3rd innings and also hit an RBI double in the 4th.
Hernandez went 2 for 4 with two RBIs and two runs scored while Cuestas went 2 for 4 with two RBIs and a triple.
Orduno gave up three runs on nine hits with four strikeouts and two walks.
April 23: @ Central Arizona College, Coolidge, 1 p.m.
April 25: Arizona Western College, West Campus, noon.
May 1-2: NJCAA Region 1 Tournament, TBA, TBA.
Number of draft selections made each year.
The number of minutes a team has to make a first-round selection.
Most trades ever made in the first round, occurring in 1995.
Number of offensive tackles selected in the draft, which is more than any other position.
Number of quarterbacks taken at No. 1, which is more than any other position.
Number of tight ends selected as the No.1 overall pick, the only position to never be chosen.
Amount of No.1 picks inducted into the Pro-Football Hall of Fame.
Year for the best draft class to date, with 10 future Hall-of-Famers including Roger Staubach and Bill Parcells.
Number of undrafted Hall-of-Famers: John Randle, Warren Moon, Larry Little and Jim Langer.
Year for the best draft selections made by a single team, the Pittsburgh Steelers. Future Hall-of-Famers chosen were Lynn Swann, Jack Lambert, John Stallworth and Mike Webster.
Amount paid for the biggest rookie NFL contract ever, when Sam Bradford signed a six-year agreement with the St. Louise Rams in 2010.
By WILL WILLCOXSON
In a dream world, our favorite college basketball stars would keep their talents at our schools as long as possible. But in today’s world of college sports, the majority of the great players break for the opportunity to shine in the NBA.
The current rule set by the National College Players Association requires prospects to be 19 years old and a year removed from high school.
A few popular ideas have been proposed to counter that rule.
One is the “MLB rule.” Players get to decide in high school whether they want to go directly into the pros or take up to three years of college eligibility.
Another idea, dubbed the “Bill Gates theory,” is that a player shouldn’t be forced to go to school if he can already earn millions.
The biggest flaw in those propositions is giving 18 year olds the power to decide their future. Young adults don’t necessarily have a track record for being the best decision makers.
That leaves us to consider what appears to be the most popular suggestion of all: extending the college requirement from one year to three or four years.
However, college basketball still wouldn’t improve if this rule were enacted.
We would have to pay the players. The NCPA found in a 2011 study, “The Price of Poverty in Big Time College Sport,” that 80 percent of all college basketball scholarships leave players below the federal poverty level.
If these young adults were forced to stay in college for three or four years, they would almost certainly be tempted to play out their eligibility overseas, where they could earn a decent income at the same time.
Hypothetically, if the two- to three-year rule and a college salary were added to the mix, there would be lots of potential for restoring college hoops to its former glory.
With the absence of the dreaded “one and done,” players would have years to elevate their respective programs as opposed to one year playing, a quick goodbye press conference and a coach stuck trying rebuild a team.
It would allow NBA scouts more time to analyze prospects and essentially filter out the lottery picks.
College basketball would be less likely ruled by 10 elite programs taking all the top prospects. Those schools could keep their top players longer, and new prospects could join other schools for more playing time.
Aside from the risk of injury, the biggest issue is the time taken off a prospect’s five-year learning curve. Players would spend time focusing on school instead of trying to please a NBA staff.
The only way to turn college hoops into a basketball mecca is to keep the stars in class a little bit longer.