Local teams will face-off for diamond titles

Local teams will face-off for diamond titles
(Cover photo courtesy: Pubelo High Athletics)

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Three state championships on the diamond this week will have a decidedly Southern Arizona flair.

On the boys' side in Conference 3A baseball, top-seed Sabino will take an eight-game winning streak into their first championship game since winning it all in 1997.

The Sabercats (28-3) beat 12th seed Empire 6-3 Saturday night at Amphi High School to earn the title game berth.

Adam Villasenor had a two-run single in a five-run third inning for Sabino. Tyler Wiltshire went all the way on the bump for the Sabercats.

It was Sabino's third win this season over the section-rival Ravens (18-14).

The Sabercats will take on third seed Sahuarita Monday night at Hi Corbett Field (4 p.m.).

The Mustangs (23-7) beat Queen Creek Casteel 12-5 Saturday night in Phoenix to clinch their spot.

Jose Dicochea drove in three runs, Saul Escaregga and Angel Ortiz two each to help Sahuarita overcome an early 2-0 deficit.

Dicochea struck out ten and all five of the runs he allowed were unearned.

Meanwhile in Conference 4A, top-seed Nogales will have the chance to defend their title against Catalina Foothills.

The Apaches (30-5) beat Sunrise Mountain in Phoenix on Saturday night.

Samuel Legleu's walk-off single in the bottom of the 9th gave Nogales a 6-5 win. Their fourth straight victory in an elimination game.

The Falcons (25-7) have been sitting in the title game since Wednesday as the lone undefeated team in bracket play.

Nogales will be looking for their 11th state championship in baseball while Catalina Foothills, in a fifth title game in program history, is still trying to win their first.

This will be the nightcap at Hi Corbett Field on Monday with first pitch scheduled for 7 p.m.

On the girls' side in Conference 5A softball, 8th seed Ironwood Ridge will square off against #3 seed Cienega for the title.

The Nighthawks enter the championship game undefeated in tournament play while the Bobcats had to win a dramatic 2-1 12 inning affair over Peoria Centennial on Friday night at the Rose Mofford Complex in Phoenix to earn their spot.

Cienega's victory came on a walk-off RBI single by Kaitlyn Anderson.

The Nighthawks (27-9) won the Division II state title in 2016 while the Bobcats (28-6) took the initial 5A title in 2017.

The two teams split their regular season meetings with each winning at home by one run.

This game will be played at ASU's Farrington Stadium on Tuesday night at 5:30 p.m.

The Salpointe Catholic softball team is the lone squad that will not be involved in an all local affair.

The Lancers (32-4) will play for the Conference 4A title in Tempe on Tuesday (6:30 p.m.) against Glendale Cactus.

Salpointe Catholic won state softball titles in 1993 and 1996.

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