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Coach Pat Armstrong, head coach to the Crossroads Varsity Baseball team, coaches at Cloverfield Park during the teams' Spring Break vacation. (photo by Maya Myers)

CROSSROADS — The Roadrunners baseball team may be 9-2 on the season, but that doesn’t mean that there isn’t a little extra work to be put in.

Coming off a strong showing at the Santa Ynez Tournament, including a 6-2 win on Wednesday, the team is facing a bit of a layoff until the next game on April 15 against Animo Leadership. But, in the meantime Co-Head Coach Matt Amido would like the team to use the opportunity to work on the finer points of the game.

“We basically go over the basics during the break,” Amido said while scouting Brentwood High School. “We need to keep doing the things that we would be doing in games.

“We’re just trying to stay sharp.”

While fundamentals will top the agenda during the next couple of practices during spring break, Amido hopes his team doesn’t lose its mental toughness during the long delay between games.

“Too much time off isn’t really a good thing,” Amido said. “Thankfully, most of our kids use the week to do something on their own.”

He said that the team’s trio of seniors have organized practice sessions on their own, with many of the team’s 11 players attending.

“I’m very happy with our seniors,” Amido said. “But don’t get me wrong, we wouldn’t have the record that we do without the (underclassmen).”

Contributions from the team’s younger players have played a major role in the team’s success thus far and Amido believes the extra practice afforded by spring break will give him a chance to focus on the team’s weaknesses.

“I think we need to continue to work on the little things on offense,” he said.

Amido and fellow head coach Pat Armstrong would also like to address some of the most basic skills on the baseball field.

“I really want to work on stuff like tossing the ball around,” Amido said, “just the basics.”

Amido is also mindful that the bulk of the team’s league games are seemingly right around the corner, which makes this extra amount of practice pivotal if the team is going to finish strong and make the postseason.

He particularly has his eyes on Winward, the reigning Delphic League champs.

“They mix things up,” he said of his chief rival. “They do play small ball, but they do have some hitters.”

He also heaped praise on Windward’s pitching staff, a group that he feels is the class of the league.

Samohi softball looks ahead<p>

If the Vikings softball team is going to make noise in the California Interscholastic Federation Southern Section playoffs, Head Coach Debbie Skaggs believes her players will have to maximize the 19-day delay caused by spring break to their advantage.

“We can’t be complacent,” Skaggs said. “We’re trying to build for the playoffs and the El Segundo Tournament.”

Included in the mid-season tournament will be local powers El Segundo, Torrance and North Torrance. Skaggs sees those teams as opportunities for her squad to sharpen their skills and tune up for the postseason.

“We’re still working on fundamentals,” she said. “We have to be able to execute, move runners around.”

She feels that the Ocean League schedule shouldn’t give the team problems, but is careful to note that her team is certainly a target. Her Vikings didn’t allow a single run during league play last season and would like to see that trend continue. In the team’s two Ocean League games, Samohi shutout both Inglewood and Beverly Hills.

“It’s kind of weird to think, but we usually platoon a little bit [during league games] to give kids an opportunity to get in those situations,” she said.

Her Vikings are 11-5 on the season and 2-0 in league. The next game for Samohi will come April 21 at home against Hawthorne.

daniela@smdp.com