The California High softball team is still waiting for its hitting to come around, but the Grizzlies' pitching was in fine form on the opening day of the Livermore Stampede.
Senior Lindsey Chalmers tossed a pair of shutouts as California won both of its pool play games Thursday at Robertson Park.
After beating Benicia 1-0 in a morning game, the Cal Poly-bound Chalmers struck out nine in a 2-0 win over Castro Valley.
"These were her two best games of the year, by far," California coach Joe Callaway said.
Against Castro Valley, Chalmers was locked into a pitchers' duel with Trojans senior Baylee Johnson until Kassie Kochan delivered a two-run single in the top of the sixth inning. Kochan's hit scored Nicole Schofield, who walked, and Kristina Pagano, who reached on a bunt single, and came after Cal had loaded the bases with one out.
Kochan also had the game-winning hit in the eighth inning in the Grizzlies' win over Benicia.
Castro Valley (5-4) threatened in the bottom half of the sixth but stranded runners at first and second after Chalmers induced a pair of pop-ups.
The victories were the first two shutouts of the season for Chalmers and California (4-3).
"My movement was much better than it was the last couple of weeks, and I had more speed," Chalmers said. "I just felt good out there."
Johnson was also tough on opposing batters. She had a no-hitter going through five innings and fanned 11.
Both teams featured youthful lineups behind their senior pitchers. No player on either team had multiple hits.
"We're still not sure who we are, but this is a good indicator that we're a contender," Callaway said.
California will face Carondelet on Friday at 8:30 p.m. in its final pool play game. A win over the Cougars would put the Grizzlies in Saturday's championship semifinals.
Livermore 7, Cosumnes Oaks-Elk Grove 3: Freshman Alyssa Ramirez went 3 for 3 with two RBIs and two doubles as the Livermore Stampede hosts won the opener of their tournament. Leah Taulton scored twice and had an RBI single in a game that lasted four innings due to the time limit.
Monte Vista 2, Heritage 1: Two solo home runs from leadoff hitter Lindsay Rood powered the Mustangs to a win in their Livermore Stampede opener. Kaylee James scored for Heritage to tie the game in the third, but Rood blasted her second homer in the bottom half of the inning to give Mustangs pitcher Mackenzie Murphy the win.
San Leandro 3, Hayward 0: Kevin Nava threw a no-hitter, striking out 10 with no walks, as the host Pirates (1-0 WACC) topped the Farmers in West Alameda County Conference play. Hayward (1-11, 0-1 WACC) had two base runners thanks to two San Leandro errors.