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Sports briefs: Trio of teams bow out of NorCal playoffs



Cassidy Kaplan had the only hit of the game for San Rafael High as the Bulldogs lost a pitchers’ duel against host Dixon in the NorCal Division III quarterfinals on Tuesday.

Kaplan singled to lead off the fifth with the Bulldogs trailing 1-0 but San Rafael promptly hit into a double play to end the threat. San Rafael put two runners on base in the top of the sixth after Larissa Baltazar and Sophia Everett both drew walks but Dixon pitcher Felesha LePenske induced a groundout to end the inning.

LePenske went all seven innings, allowing one hit and three walks while striking out 12.

San Rafael ace Thomara Drummer worked all six innings, allowing three hits and a walk while striking out 10. Dixon’s run was unearned when the Rams scored on an error in the bottom of the fourth inning.

The Bulldogs (25-5) remain the only Marin team to qualify for the NorCal softball playoffs, which began in 2022. San Rafael lost in the quarterfinals in 2022 and again on Tuesday.

San Marin falls

Anthony Scheppler hit a two-run home run in the top of the third to pull the San Marin baseball team within two runs but the Mustangs were unable to get any closer in a 6-3 to host St. Ignatius in the NorCal D-II quarterfinals in Pacifica on Tuesday.

St. Ignatius led 4-0 through two innings until San Marin’s Sean McGrath drew a one-out walk then Scheppler followed with his homer to make it 4-2. St. Ignatius added two more runs in the bottom of the frame.

San Marin (22-9) scored its other run in the fourth. Daniel Rolovich walked, Joey Cippolina singled, then Cole Chamberlain drove in Rolovich with another single.

Cippolina and Scheppler had two hits apiece for San Marin.

Branson bows out

Branson (12-16) was held to two hits in the NorCal D-V quarterfinals on Tuesday but still had a chance to tie the game in the top of the seventh in an eventual 2-1 loss to Bradshaw Christian in Sacramento.

Thomas Lardner kept Branson’s hopes alive with a two-out single in the top of the seventh then advanced to second on a wild pitch. Bradshaw Christian reliever Ethan Rickert registered his fourth strikeout to end the game.

Branson’s other hit came in the fourth when Mo Jacoby hit a leadoff double. Jacoby stole third and came around to score on a sacrifice fly by Jackson Kayser to pull Branson within 2-1.

Branson pitcher Grayson Roberts worked 5.1 innings with seven hits, two earned runs and three strikeouts. The Bulls also appeared in the NorCal playoffs in 2022 and are the only Marin program to qualify twice in the three-year history of the event.

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