out-dueled Ghazaleh Sailors, but there were no losers here. Both girls proved they could pitch a baseball quite effectively against boys.
In a historic matchup, Sementelli pitched all seven innings to lead host Birmingham (Lake Balboa, Calif.)
to a 6-1 victory over San Marcos (Santa Barbara)
Saturday afternoon before an estimated 300 fans and 25 members of the media.
The 5-foot-2 senior scattered seven hits, walked three and struck out four while throwing 102 pitches. She had never pitched more than four innings in a varsity game.
Sailors, a 5-3 senior, pitched the first 3 1/3 innings, allowing two runs, three hits and no walks. Relief pitchers gave up the final four runs.
It is believed to be the first time two girls have pitched against each other in a varsity high school baseball game. Lake Balboa is a suburb of the San Fernando Valley in Southern California near Los Angeles.
"It's great for my school," Sementelli told MaxPreps. "We started off with a 4-0 record (all this week) and I didn't want to screw it up. It was by far the most intense that I've been into a game. It was my moment to shine a little bit.
"I had put a lot of pressure on myself. I knew it was a big game – very historic - and I was looking forward to it a lot. My teammates showed a lot of confidence in me."
Asked what she threw mostly, she replied, "Junk. I threw a lot of sliders and palm balls. Once I got into my groove, they were all breaking like crazy."
Sementelli said there were no negative comments before, during or after the game.
"This week was all, ‘Let's go to the baseball game,' " she said. "We usually have about 15 or 20 parents (on a Saturday afternoon). It was insane. Today was the best day. All I heard was great feedback. After the game (during interviews) I was like Kobe Bryant."
Birmingham coach Matt Mowry was very impressed, especially after Sementelli opened the game walking three straight batters.
"I was really surprised, because San Marcos is a good team," he said. "She walked the first three batters – the only three she walked in the entire game – but after that she settled down and pitched a great game."
Sailors left the game trailing 2-0, but it could have been scoreless because strong sunlight played a part in some dropped outfield fly balls.
"I was throwing slow and trying to keep them off balance," Sailors said. "Then our bullpen came in and really fell apart.
"I kept the perspective of no loser in this game. It was making history and I was looking forward to it for a long time. It was about creating an opportunity for girls down the road."
Mowry was impressed with Sailors' performance as well.
"We were struggling a little bit and she was keeping us off balance," he said. "I was just really happy they both came out and did a great job. I definitely think it will help (future opportunities for girls to play on baseball teams)."
"Hopefully, this will change people's minds about girls playing baseball," she said. "There were some girls here 12 or 13 years old wondering what to do in the future. They have to make a decision. A lot of girls are shot down. We showed the world it can be done."