Aliyah Ricks described it as pure chaos.
That was the mood in the Atwater dugout as the Falcons rallied for six runs in the top of the sixth inning to defeat Merced 6-3 on Tuesday afternoon at Merced High.
"Everyone was excited," Ricks "Everyone was screaming. That's what led to nine hits."
The win gave Atwater (5-1 Central California Conference, 10-8 overall) sole possession of first place in the conference.
The rally came out of nowhere.
Merced ace Chelsea Evans had silenced the Atwater bats, limiting the Falcons to just one hit through the first five innings.
The Bears (4-2 CCC, 10-6) were on cruise control after Serina Castillo's fourth-inning solo homer extend their lead to 3-0.
"We just needed a spark," Atwater coach Marcia-Marie Rosson said. "That's really all we needed. It took one girl to get a hit."
Andrea Hooper started the sixth inning by lining a single to center. Ricks then beat out a bunt for a base hit that put runners on the corners.
Gracie Sanstevisen, Mari Valdez and Gabriella Esiponsa made it five straight hits as they all drove in runs with singles to tie the game at 3-3. Two batters later, Haley Lawrence singled to center to score Valdez with the go-ahead run.
By the time the top of the sixth inning was over, Atwater had sent 12 hitters to the plate, collecting nine hits on its way to a 6-3 lead.
"It was one single at a time," Rosson said. "We didn't have any doubles to the fence. Nine girls got hits. That's a team win."
Ricks settled down in the circle after giving up the home run to Castillo.
Merced loaded the bases with three straight singles with two outs in the bottom of the sixth, but Ricks got Summer Sanchez to ground out to end the threat.
"Aliyah held her own," Rosson said. "We've been talking about cutting out the walks and she only had one walk today."
The Falcons had been waiting for their rematch with Merced for weeks. The game was supposed to take place on March 28, but it was rained out.
Atwater played one of its worst games of the year the first time against Merced in a 10-0 rout.
"We've been waiting for this game like it was the last day of our lives," Ricks said. "The first game was cancelled. Then it was cancelled again. Finally, we got to play them."
Castillo led Merced, going 3 for 3 with two runs. The Bears played the game without their star shortstop Ashley Heath-Smith, who was out with a knee injury.