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No. 1 Montgomery made a statement in the North Bay League postseason softball tournament championship game at Santa Rosa Junior College.

After sharing the NBL regular-season pennant with No. 2 Rancho Cotate and No. 3 Casa Grande, the Vikings’ 6-1 win against the Cougars on Thursday clinched Montgomery’s third consecutive NBL postseason tournament title.

Furthermore, by virtue of their NBL tournament title, the Vikings (20-6) will be considered the league champions for seeding purposes in the North Coast Section Division 2 playoffs. Montgomery coach Mike Malvino said the Vikings will likely get a first-round home game and a three-to-five seed.

“One of my goals was to win 20 games this season,” he said. “Tonight our defense was great and our bats were working.”

Montgomery relied on its No. 2 starter, Lilly Castro, since Vikings ace Anna Zoia-Buescher was unable to pitch due to injuring her non-throwing shoulder in a slide during Tuesday’s semifinal against Ukiah.

Zoia-Buescher played in the outfield against the Cougars (14-10) but her status for pitching in the NCS is uncertain, Malvino said.

“Lilly has finally developed a change-up that is coming in nicely,” Malvino said. “She was mixing the fastball with the change-up and that kept their batters off-balance. She got a lot of pop-ups and groundouts and that helped out a lot. Rancho’s batters were not making her work.”

Castro went seven innings, giving up a run and 5 hits for the win.

Cougars starter Carmen Haugen (3 innings, 3 runs, 6 hits) took the loss.

Haugen surrendered a two-run homer to Montgomery’s Olivia Gabriel in the second inning that broke open a 1-1 tie and put the Vikings in charge for good.

The Vikings’ offense was led by Gabriel (2-4, HR, triple, 4 RBIs, 2 runs), Zoia-Buescher (2-4, run), Ashley Baker (2-2, RBI) and Rylee O’Mara (2-3, 2 runs).

Haugen (1-3, triple, RBI) led Rancho Cotate in hitting.

Montgomery finished 3-0 against Rancho Cotate this season and has won 10 of the last 11 head-to-head games with the Cougars over the past three years.

Petaluma 11, Sonoma Valley 1 (6)

At Analy, the host No. 1 Trojans (20-5) won the final Sonoma County League postseason softball tournament against the overmatched No. 2 Dragons (13-12). Petaluma also won the final SCL regular-season title.

Petaluma went 3-0 against Sonoma this season.

“This is special for the girls to be the last champions in the SCL regular season and postseason tournament,” Petaluma coach Kurt Jastrow said. “The SCL is done — it was nice to be the last champs.”

Beginning with high school sports this fall, the SCL and the NBL will be combined into a two-division North Bay League.

The Trojans will probably host a first-round game in NCS Division 2 and likely be a top-six seed.

Mandy O’Keefe pitched a complete game for the Trojans, giving up one run and four hits.

“O’Keefe dominated Sonoma’s one through four hitters. She had them under control,” Jastrow said. “When her screwball is working, it is in on the batters’ hands, and they either pop it up or foul it off.”

Trojans freshman Rachael Bles, the SCL MVP, hit a monstrous grand slam over the center field wall in the second inning with two outs to give Petaluma a 4-0 lead. Bles was 2-4 with a homer, triple, four RBIs, and four runs.

“Bles is the real deal; she can really play,” Jastrow said. “She has a quick bat and good pop. She swings hard but is under control.”

Sonoma starter Kennedy Midgley worked back-to-back nights after earning a complete-game win in Wednesday’s semifinal against Analy. Midgley took the loss and was replaced in the fourth inning after giving up five runs and five hits.

“Against Midgley, I told our girls to be patient and make her throw a lot of pitches,” Jastrow said. “We got 11 walks (in the game). We were patient at the plate and when we got runners on, we made Sonoma pay with hits.”

Indy Smith was 2-3 with two runs for Petaluma.

In SCL boys baseball:

Petaluma 14, Analy 1 (5)

At Sonoma, the No. 1 Trojans (18-6) brought the heavy lumber against the visiting No. 3 Tigers (17-9) to win the SCL postseason baseball tournament.

Petaluma will likely host a first-round NCS Division 2 game and be a four-to-six seed.

The Trojans cashed in a 10-run second inning, under a barrage of hits, to put the game away.

“It was one of those nights where all of our kids were attacking at the plate and being aggressive. Balls were flying all over the park. Scoring has not been a problem for us,” Petaluma coach Jim Selvitella said. “I don’t think we could have played any better these last two games.”

The Petaluma offense was led by Nick Andrakin (3-3, 3 RBIs), Kempton Brandis (2-2, 2B, 3 RBIs), Porter Slate (2-2, 2B, 2 RBIs), Jack Gallagher (3-3, RBI), and Sammy Brown (2-2, 2B, 3 RBIs).

Gavin Ochoa got the win for Petaluma and Brenden Medina took the loss for Analy.

“We won the last SCL regular season and now the tournament, but more importantly, this gives us momentum going into the NCS tournament. I want to get on a four-game winning streak (in the NCS),” Selvitella said. “We are excited for next week to see how good we really are.”

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