The 2020-21 school year, which was tainted by a worldwide pandemic, has been over for nearly three weeks, but three local high school teams find themselves still battling it out for statewide recognition. The CIF Southern Section playoffs took place over the last two weeks for local baseball and softball programs at the high school level and only a handful found themselves extending their season.

On the baseball field it was the Elsinore Tigers who made it the furthest in the postseason, advancing all the way to the Division 6 finals, where they fell to La Habra 8-3. In Division’s 1 through 3, all teams that advanced to the semifinals or further, were given a bid to the State Regional tournament, and those that were in Division 4 through 7, those that made it to finals were also given a bid to extend their season for one more week.

Elsinore Tigers. Valley News/Courtesy photo

As the CIF State Regional tournament got underway this week, No. 6 Elsinore defeated No. 3 Legacy 16-0 to advance in the Division 5 brackets. Two Tiger’s pitchers combined to throw the shutout as Logan Farley earned the victory lasting four innings, allowing one hit and zero runs while striking out three and walking zero. Emmerling threw one inning in relief out of the bullpen.

Elsinore collected 12 hits on the day. Isaac Martinez, Kaiyu Hasegawa, and Semaj Moore all managed multiple hits. Martinez led the Tigers with three hits and Josh McAninch went deep with the long ball in the second inning.

The Tigers will play the Christian Patriots (26-4) Thursday, June 24, in the semifinals (only 3 rounds in the State Regionals). Christian, who took first place in San Diego’s City League has a 17-game win streak on the line. The winner of Elsinore vs. Christian will advance to the June 26th championship against the winner of La Habra, and Lancaster.

Hemet Softball. Valley News/Courtesy photo

On the softball diamond two teams advanced to the State Regionals, while one local team opted to get their summer started early. In the Division 2 bracket No. 6 Hemet defeated No. 3 Redondo Union 9-5, and have moved on to play Oxnard (No. 7) Thursday June 24, at the Diamond Valley fields in Hemet. The winner will face the winner of the Sultana vs. Rosary Academy, which is taking place that same day. Rosary Academy beat Hemet in the Division 4 finals just one week prior.

Over in the Division 3 CIF State Regional brackets, No. 6 Orange Vista lost their first-round game to No. 3 Fowler, 5-2. The Lakeside Lancers, who were the only local team to win a CIF Southern Section title (Division 7), opted out to start their summer. Many girls from the team had already committed to play with their showcase/travel ball teams in out-of-state tournaments. This being the first time in history that games have been played this far into the summer, due to the late start caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, teams opting to not play was high on the radar for the CIF offices.

JP Raineri can be reached by email at