Green Wave opens state title series Monday
The battle for the Class AAAA state softball championship begins today at Summerville High School's field.
The Green Wave (23-7) will host Boiling Springs at 6 p.m. in the first game of the 2013 4-A state championship series. The first team to win two games in the series will be crowned champion.
Boiling Springs advanced to the state-title series with a 10-0 win over Byrnes last week in the Upper State championship series. Summerville advanced to the series by handing Bluffton (21-7) a 4-2 loss Friday in the Lower State championship game.
“We started off this season well but then we had a little rough patch so I'm just proud of the way our kids kind of turned things around and of the way they have played in the playoffs,” Summerville coach Heather Tucker said. “Lefty (Taylor Wuerfel) did an outstanding job pitching. Taylor Belfiore, who had all four RBIs, was really focused at the plate.”
This year marks only the second time in Green Wave softball history that Summerville has claimed a Lower State title.
The other time was in 2010 when the Green Wave lost to Mauldin in the state finals and had to settle for runner-up honors. This week, the competition will be just as stiff as Boiling Springs is the top-ranked 4-A team in the state. Earlier this season, Boiling Springs won the Azalea Invitational Tournament that is hosted by the Green Wave.
Wuerfel struck out nine Bluffton batters while walking only one in a complete-game effort in the circle to help the Wave advance. Belfiore was 2 for 3 at the plate and Summerville leadoff hitter Sarah Windham reached base in all three of her turns at bat, including once on a single.
Summerville's big inning was the third.
Windham reached on an error and moved over on a bunt single by Taylor Powell. Wuerfel reached on another error to load the bases and after a strikeout Belfiore doubled to center field to drive in three runs.
In the bottom of the fifth, Belfiore singled to plate Windham for a 4-0 Green Wave lead.
Bluffton did have scoring opportunities in the game, but didn't capitalize until the seventh. Pitcher Courtney Smith led off the inning with a single. Jordyn Parker had an infield single for runners on the corners and then Morganne Parker doubled to plate courtesy runner Olivia Beine.
That brought Mikyla Houghian to the plate and she singled. Parker rounded third and the Summerville left fielder threw the ball in to Wuerfel who opted not to throw home but go after the runner on her way to third. Parker scored but after a short rundown Wuerfel threw to third baseman Hannah Horton and she tagged the runner for the final out of the game.
The evening marked the end of a strong season for the Bobcats, which moved up to the 4-A classification just this season. Bluffton split its region games with Summerville and the two teams finished as co-region champions for Region 8-AAAA.
Contact Roger Lee @ 873-9424 ext. 213 or firstname.lastname@example.org