HHS Softball
Hughson wins tiebreaker to earn softball playoff berth

May 13, 2024

Based on its overall strength and past performance, the Trans-Valley League got to send four teams to the Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs this year.

The first three choices were easy – league champion Ripon with its perfect 10-0 TVL record, runner-up Livingston (7-3) and third-place Riverbank (4-6).

The fourth team was a little trickier, given that Hughson, Hilmar and Escalon all finished at 3-7 in league play.

Head-to-head results didn’t break the tie. Hughson beat Hilmar twice, Hilmar knocked off Escalon two times and Escalon defeated Hughson twice. All three schools also had one victory over Riverbank.

The next tiebreaker was fewest runs allowed in TVL games, with a maximum of 10 runs counted for any game (all three schools gave up for more than 10 runs in at least one game, but 10 is all that counted toward the final total). Under that scenario, Escalon had allowed 78 runs while Hughson and Hilmar only gave up 66 each. Escalon was eliminated.

With Escalon out and Hughson and Hilmar still tied, TVL athletic directors had a choice – revert back to the first tiebreaker (head-to-head results) or flip a coin. They chose to acknowledge Hughson’s two victories over Hilmar, vaulting the Huskies into the Division V playoffs, which start Tuesday.

Hughson (10-12) was seeded sixth in the eight-team bracket and will go on the road to face No. 3 Calaveras (19-5-1). The winner will move on to play Thursday against the winner of the game between No. 2 Sonora (22-6) and No. 7 Ben Holt Academy (15-10) of Stockton. The championship game is scheduled for May 18.