Story and photo by Jesse Muñoz/COC Sports Information Director
No. 8 seed College of the Canyons will host No. 9 Cerritos College in a best-of-three series during the opening round of the California Community College Athletic Association Southern California Regional Playoffs May 4-5 at Whitten Field.
Entry to CCCAA playoff contests is $12 for general admission and $8 for students and staff with ID, senior citizens and children under 12 years old.
Canyons (26-14, 16-0) finished the regular season as the Western State Conference, East Division Champions after completing a perfect 16-0 run through the conference schedule — a feat that had not been accomplished since 2013.
The Cougars have now advanced to the postseason in seven straight seasons under COC head coach John Wissmath, who took home conference coach of the year honors in 2018. The conference title was the seventh under Wissmath and 15th overall in program history.
Canyons had 11 players earn all-conference honors at season’s end, including shortstop Danielle Chatman who was named the WSC, East Division Player of the Year after batting .424 with a team-high 10 home runs and 49 RBIs across 39 games.
Chatman was also named to the California Community College Fastpitch Coaches Association (3CFCA) All-State Team.
COC sophomore outfielder Heidi Ludy was named a 3CFCA All-Southern California honoree in addition to earning All-WSC East First-Team honors. Ludy led the Cougars with a .432 average, finished third on the club with 31 RBIs and tied for second with 39 runs. Her 25 steals were tops on the team and second in the WSC.
No. 9 Cerritos (22-16, 8-4) finished the regular season as runner-up in the South Coast Conference, South Division under head coach Kodee Murray.
The Falcons have been paced by sophomore Briana Lopez, an All-SCC First-Team selection who leads the state with 18 home runs and ranks fifth with 59 RBIs heading into the playoffs.
Cerritos sophomore outfielder Brianna Spoolstra has also been a key contributor for the Falcons, leading the team with a .450 average and .538 on-base percentage to be named an All-Southern California Team selection.
Canyons and Cerritos previously met back on April 14, with the Falcons able to come away with a 16-7 victory at Whitten Field. In that contest, Cerritos opened up an early 7-0 lead before the Cougars clawed back with six unanswered runs. In the end, a six-run sixth inning by the Falcons helped push Cerritos over the top.
The two programs also met in the first round of the 2015 CCCAA Southern California Regional Playoffs, with Cerritos taking the series 2-0.
COC and Cerritos will begin its three-game series at 2 p.m. Friday, May 4.
Action will resume at noon on Saturday, with a potential third and final game scheduled to follow at approximately 2 p.m.
A full schedule of CCCAA SoCal Regional matchups can be found here.
Stay up to date on all this season’s action by following the College of the Canyons Athletic department on social media at @COCathletics on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube.