Groveton head baseball coach, Wayne Williams, may be a fortune teller.
After Groveton lost to Woden early in the year, Williams predicted they would see each other in the fifth round of playoffs. Now that we’re in the regional finals, Groveton is seeing Woden again.
“Ever since we lost to them we knew we’d see them,” said Groveton pitcher Haden Terry. “Coach told us we're going to get another chance fifth round and here it is. This is our chance to get a little bit of revenge and get to the state tournament.”
The first time these two teams met, Woden squeaked by 1-0. It was a loss the Indians swallowed and never looked back from. Groveton hasn’t lost a game since and are on a 25-game win streak.
The Eagles won’t make going to state an easy trip though. Woden’s Drew Shifflet has been the Eagles ace with an ERA lower than .50.
“I just got to pitch and throw strikes. If I hit my spots, they won't hit the ball real hard and our defense can make the plays,” said Shifflet.
“I feel like it's pretty evenly matched. I feel like the better hitting is going to win but we both got phenomenal pitching and it’s going to be a tough game. It's going to be a fight all the way through,” said Woden outfielder Tanner Albritton.
The Indians are hitting over .380 and have two aces of their own in Glenn Thornton and Terry, who have a combined ERA of .92.
“It's probably going to come down to who's at the right position at the right time,” said Groveton outfielder Saul Chavez. “We're both really good teams with good pitchers. It's just going to come down to who wants it more.”
“It's going to be tough. They have just as good of pitching as we do. It's going to be tough to scrap out runs but if we play our ball we can win,” said Shifflet.
No. 4 Woden and No. 7 Groveton will have their series at Lufkin’s Morris Frank Park. Game 1 starts Thursday at 7 p.m. Game 2 will be Friday at 11 a.m. If necessary, Game 3 will be played after Game 2.
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