Three-quarters of the Boston City League softball championships are set.
O’Bryant will play Latin Academy at Cobe Field at 11 a.m. in the Fens Saturday morning. East Boston will play a team to be determined by Friday afternoon’s contests at 11 a.m. on Saturday at Clemente Field, also in the Fens.
If West Roxbury defeats South Boston on Friday afternoon they will play East Boston on Saturday. If West Roxbury loses, Dorchester would slide into the city championships and play Eastie in Saturday's semifinal.
“I was in this position last year where I didn’t know who I was playing till I got off the bus and saw Boston International warming up,” Easton Boston coach Thomas Elliott said Friday morning. “You’d like to know who you’d be playing because you go back through and you have your own scouting reports.
“At this point in time it doesn’t really matter, you still have to catch the ball, throw the ball and score runs. Personally it doesn’t faze me.”
But Elliott said his players have been asking him who they will be playing.
“I tell them the same thing, we have to line up, each team has nine girls and you still have to play,” he said. “Hopefully they settle in and are at peace with that explanation but I think they’d like to know who they are playing.”
One thing is for sure, if East Boston beats their mystery opponent on Saturday, they will most likely face defending city champion, Latin Academy, in Monday morning's championship tilt.
Latin Academy hasn’t lost a City League game in five years.
“They are the best, they are the class of the league and rightfully so,” Elliott said. “They have a great group of kids and [coach] Rocco [Zizza] does a good job getting them prepared. If you want to win the city champ it has to go through Latin Academy because they are the class of the league.”
But Zizza, who mostly plays a non-league schedule, says his team is coming off a 13-0 loss to Boston Latin and they have not played O’Bryant yet this season.
“The difficult part is city softball is a lot different than softball outside the city,” he said. “Most of all because of the pitching outside the city, the quality of pitching, is usually a little more quicker. The big thing is seeing a pitcher. That’s the key thing, you’re used to a certain type of pitching, then you get to a situation where the pitching is not the same as you normally see it and that really hurts us.”
Zizza’s team had its best post-season showing of his tenure last spring, making it to the Division 3 North quarterfinals. He’s looking to improve upon that effort this season despite having a young squad.
“This year we are very talented,” he said. “We are very young right now, we only have one active senior and we start five sophomores and two freshmen every game so we’ve taken our lumps outside the city but hopefully that will battle test us for the city championships and also the state tournament.”
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- Bob Holmes: A Reading resident (Go Rockets!) and Boston College graduate, Holmes is the Boston Globe High School Sports Editor. We remind you now that his weekly picks are often made in jest so everyone just calm down when he picks against Everett for 11 straight weeks. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeHolmes.
- Craig Larson: A native of West Springfield (Leo Durocher anyone? Tim Daggett?) and Curry College graduate (a proud Colonel!), Larson is the sports editor for the Globe's regional sections: South, West and North, as well as a frequent contributor on the college beat. Abington to Xaverian: it all starts with the schools. Have a compelling story idea? Contact him at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeLars.
- Zuri Berry: Berry attended the same high school as sports legends O.J. Simpson and Joe DiMaggio. (Guess which one is his hero.) He's a South Boston resident (formerly of Eastie) and the editor of the High School Sports blog as well as the go-to-guy for everything high school sports on Boston.com. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @ZuriBerry for all of the latest updates.
Then there are our winter correspondents:
- Alex Hall | @AlexKHall | Baseball
- Colleen Casey | @ColleenCasey226 | Softball
- Mike Giesta | Boys lacrosse
- Catherine Calsolaro | @catrenee13 | Girls lacrosse
- Liz Torres | @etorres446 | Boys volleyball
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