Compton Softball Turns Program Around

Destiny Vega returns for her second season on the Compton Softball team.
Destiny Vega returns for her second season on the Compton Softball team.

The hurdles that the Compton College softball program has had to make the past few years certainly required patience as well as an attitude that the squad would eventually earn some success.

Going back to 2020, Compton first dealt with the COVID-19 pandemic that cut short all Spring sports, then the cancellation of the 2021 season. In 2022, the program was forced to sit out the season as it had to regroup with a changeover to a new head coach.

Enter Victoria Castillo who made it her mission to bring Compton back to the playing field after serving as an assistant coach for one of the state's top programs at Cypress College. Last year, the Compton program returned to play but had to go through the growing pains that go with playing in one of the more difficult conferences in the state--the South Coast Conference.

But the start of 2024 has the program feeling good, especially after an opening weekend at the Glendale Tournament. Compton went 2-1 at the tourney, winning the college's first game since the 2020 shortened season. 

In fact, Compton won back-to-back games on Jan. 27, defeating San Diego City, 8-2, then producing a 5-inning mercy rule, 8-0 triumph over Santa Monica. The win over SDCC ended a 29-game losing streak and was the first since a win over LA Harbor in February, 2020, only a few weeks before the pandemic hit.

The two straight victories are the program's first back-to-back wins since 2019.

Returning sophomore Destiny Vega batted .500 with a double while newcomer second baseman Maya Benegas had a big performance, batting 4-for-7 (.571) with two doubles, a triple and a home run to go with five RBI. 

Other freshmen off to great starts are first baseman Serena Velez (3-for-7, .421), third baseman Emely Regalado (three RBI, four runs scored), and shortstop Venezia Uribe, who was 3-for-4 (.750) with two walks and a double. Sophomore transfer catcher Elisa Solano slugged a 3-run homer to close out the Santa Monica game.

Compton's pitchers had a good start too with frosh Abigail Huerta pitching a 5-inning, 1-hit shutout v. SMC and sophomore transfer Laila Vidales hurling a 5-inning, 4-hitter in the SD City victory.

Overall, Castillo has put together a 15-player roster. Compton will play 13 more non-conference games while embarking on the 21-game, SCC portion of the schedule. The team's first scheduled home games for next week will likely be postponed due to the rain forecast. 

Compton's first conference game is slated for February 22 against defending conference champion Mt. San Antonio College.