Down to its last out, El Camino College needed some late-game heroics and Karla Calderon came through with the go-ahead hit in the seventh inning as the Warriors edged Chaffey 7-6 Wednesday afternoon in Rancho Cucamonga.
The Warriors (26-6) extended their winning streak to a season best 11 games and have now won 21 of their last 22, but the win did not come easy as ECC had to overcome a five-run deficit midway through the game and trailed by a run with two outs in the top of the seventh.
With runners on second and third and two outs, Calderon stepped in and doubled in the game-tying and go-ahead runs in the top of the seventh to give the Warriors a 7-6 lead. Maisie Weishoff, who came in to pitch in relief in the second with ECC already down 3-0, shut the door in the bottom of the seventh as she induced a double play to erase a leadoff single and then got a groundout to first to end the game and secure the win.
The Warriors fell behind 5-0 after two innings after the Panthers teed off on starter Clarissa Chiquete. Erika Dominguez blasted a two-run home run with two outs in the first to give the hosts the early lead. In the second, Denise Baires tripled with a runner aboard to make it 3-0 and that was the end of Chiquete's day in the circle.
Weishoff entered and retired two of the first three batters she faced, issuing a walk in between the outs. With runners at the corners, Lisette Rosales cashed in one run with a single and then Dominguez followed with an RBI single of her own to put the Warriors in a 5-0 hole after two innings.
But the deficit was short-lived as the Warriors capitalized on three hits and two of the Panthers' four errors on the day to tie things up with a five-spot in the frame.
Diamond Lewis and Ashley Machado each reached on errors to score the first two runs of the inning. Calderon then hit a two-run double with two outs to trim the deficit to one and Kassidy Robinson cashed Calderon in with a single to tie things up.
Calderon finished the day 2-for-4 with four RBI and Robinson was 3-for-4 to lead the Warriors offense.
Things quieted down after that inning as neither squad was able to score until the bottom of the sixth. The Panthers got a pair of one-out singles to put the go-ahead run in scoring position.
After a flyout, Rosales again came through with a two-out single, plating Morgan Finley with the go-ahead run to make it 6-5.
Weishoff escaped any further damage by getting Dominguez to flyout for the last out of the inning.
In the seventh, Lewis led off with a walk and would advance to third on a pair of groundouts. With two down, Alyssa Wing kept the frame alive by drawing a walk and then stole second to put the game-tying and go-ahead runs in scoring position.
That set the stage for Calderon, who capped off her excellent day at the dish with a double to give ECC the lead, this time for good.
The Warriors will return home Thursday to take on L.A. Harbor in a South Coast Conference, South Division matchup. First pitch is set for 3 p.m.