Greenbrier's softball team celebrated senior night Wednesday, but coach Garrett Black was left praising the underclassmen when the game was over.
Two sophomores and a freshman contributed the key plays for the Wolfpack, who rallied for a 3-1 win over rival Evans.
"They stepped up to the plate and did big things," Black said. "All three of them did their job in the sixth inning."
All of the scoring came in the sixth inning.
After Evans took a 1-0 lead into the bottom of the inning, Greenbrier sophomore Savanah Koon's sacrifice fly tied the game. Freshman Lauren Masters then laid down a perfect squeeze bunt to score the go-ahead run from third.
"She can handle the bat well," Black said of Masters. "And we had the right person (Kaila Hunt) at third base."
Sophomore Liz Kelligan added an RBI single.
The game had different meaning than in years past, when the teams were also region rivals. Greenbrier earned the No. 1 seed during its first season in Region 2-AAAAA. Evans finished as the top seed in Region 3-AAAA.
"It was going to be a game of whoever got the breaks," Evans coach Colette Cassedy said. "It was pretty much a one-inning game. Every time we play it's that way."
The Knights begin region playoffs Saturday.
On Tuesday, the Wolfpack will begin a run at their 13th consecutive region title.
Each team's coach said the game was a good tuneup.
"We want to play good teams to help prepare us," Cassedy said.
Evans pitcher Jenny Shepherd struck out nine and did not allow a hit until the decisive sixth inning. Wolfpack pitcher Katie Tracy struck out 13.
The junior allowed an RBI double to Knights first baseman Brittinie Harrison in the top of the sixth and thought she might have cost her team the game.
But the Wolfpack's young standouts came up big.
"You don't want to leave anything out there," Tracy said. "You don't want to lose on your home field to Evans."
Reach Stephen Fastenau at (706) 863-6165 or firstname.lastname@example.org.