Home Sports Local Sports Zamora changes culture at Goddard despite a 14-3 loss

Zamora changes culture at Goddard despite a 14-3 loss

A Goddard outfielder throws the ball back after making a play during Tuesday’s Class 4A state playoff game at Silver. (Dean Thompson Photo/Silver City Daily Press)

Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record

By J.T. Keith
Roswell Daily Record
and Dean Thompson
Silver City Daily Press

Goddard first-year coach Jessica Zamora knows the value of being on a team. She knows what it is like to put her heart and soul into everything. She knows because that is how she became the head coach of the Goddard softball program.

The season didn’t end the way she had hoped it would. It was a huge step for the Lady Rockets, who made their first softball tournament appearance since 2014.

Goddard hoped to slow down the high-powered Silver Lady Colts who scored early and often on their way to a 14-3 victory over Goddard in the quarterfinals of the Class AAAA state softball tournament at the Ben Altamirano Sports Complex Tuesday morning.

The Lady Colts are the No. 3 seed in the tournament and, with the win, move on to face No. 2 Artesia on the road Thursday at 10 a.m. in the semifinals of the tournament.

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“I’m sorry that we lost,” Zamora said. “It is a statement and a testament to the girls and their belief level. They bought into our program and I couldn’t be happier. My goal going into the season was to be .500. I’m ecstatic for the girls and this team.”

Goddard made costly errors and could not string together hits when they needed them. They gave up 18 hits on the day.

Goddard made a run of their own. The Lady Rockets would load the bases in the top of the second, but wouldn’t be able to score a run. In the third, Goddard would get a key hit as they scored three runs to cut the deficit to 8-3 at the time.

“We knew that we were going to have to play a clean game to win and we did,” Silver head coach Mike Lopez said. “Our pitching was on point. Our defense was on their toes and made several plays that got us out of jams and got the momentum back on our side.

“We had great at-bats and timely hits,” he said. “Overall, I feel like it was one of our best games this year and it’s when we need it the most.”

Goddard will lose four seniors, but this senior class has started a tradition of making the playoffs. This year’s team was one of eight teams selected in the tough District 4-4A. Goddard will go into the offseason with confidence and the attitude of a champion while looking forward to next season.

Makayla Roybal earned the win in the circle for Silver as she went the distance, giving up three runs on 10 hits while walking one and striking out five.

Valerie Manzanares suffered the pitching loss for Goddard as she also went the distance, giving up 14 runs on 18 hits. She didn’t walk any Silver hitters but also didn’t record a strikeout.

Alexis Ramirez went 3-for-3 for Goddard, while Manzanares was 2-for-2; Kaydence Ray, 2-for-3; Presleigh Dutra and Alyssa Linares, 1-for-3; and Alexis Sandoval, 2-for-4.

“I’m saddened that we lost,” Zamora said. “But I’m so excited for the future of our program. I want to thank our players, assistant coaches, the administration but most of all the parents. I know how far softball can take a young lady in life. I’m living proof of where it can take a person in life. I’m very excited about what we have accomplished and where we can go in the future.”