After his team split a doubleheader with Heritage in the second-round of the Class AAAA state playoffs Wednesday at the Brierpatch, Greenbrier coach Ed Williams wasn't ready to show his hand.
"Right now we're just going to sleep on it an figure out a plan," Williams said of who he'll tab as starting pitcher in today's deciding game of the best-of-three series.
But it's not hard to figure out what move Williams will make when the Wolfpack hits the diamond.
Expect to see senior Nick Wandless on the mound at 3 p.m.
Wandless tossed a complete game 2-hitter to lead the Pack to a 3-1 victory in the opener. In Game 2, Greenbrier used five pitchers, and that wasn't enough to prevent a 4-3 defeat.
"I have confidence we can come back and win (Game 3)," Pack catcher Robert Davis said. "I'd like to see Nick go all the way, but that's a lot of strain on his arm, and you don't want to injure him."
In the nightcap, Heritage (24-6) squandered two bases-loaded opportunities, but the Patriots scored a run in their last at-bat to force Game 3.
"It's going to be interesting to see what happens," Heritage coach Brad Bond said. "I don't know what we're going to do (pitching-wise), but I hope we can hit it a little bit better."
Wandless contributed to those hitting problems. The right-hander improved his record to 10-1, allowing only a lead-off homer by Matt Dawkins in the top of the fourth before mowing down Heritage the rest of the way.
Greenbrier (22-6) scored all of its runs in the third. Brooks Robinson led off with a triple, Russell Carter followed with an RBI single, while Scott Wandless and Graham Posey added doubles.
The Pack took a 2-0 first-inning lead in Game 2. Scott Wandless led off with a double, Davis recorded an RBI single, and Nick Wandless doubled in a run.
From there, five Greenbrier pitchers combined to issue eight walks and hit two Heritage batters. Solid defense bailed the Pack out of bases-loaded jams in the first and second. Third baseman Adam Turner started a 5-2-3 double play in the second, and handled seven chances in the game without an error.
Greenbrier's luck ran out with the score tied 3-3 in the bottom of the seventh.
Davis began the inning by walking Matt Jones. Jeff Galloway and Greg Thompson singled to load the bases, and Josh Underwood drew a walk to end the game.
"That was my first outing of the season. I would have liked for it to have gone a little better, obviously," Davis said. "We just have to come out (today) and play baseball. It's loser go home. For some people, that's going to be their last ball game ever."
Reach Mike Howell at 863-6165, ext. 116.
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