LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - After missing a chance to go to state last year, the Woden baseball team was hungry for redemption.
Last year they were knocked out in the regional finals by Groveton. In that series, Woden won the first game, then lost 2 games the next day. This year they hoped it would be different.
In Game1 of the regional final, Drew Shifflet threw a one-hitter as Woden beat county-rival Douglass 7-0. That win would set up a long day in the Friday heat.
In Game 2, Wyatt Tucker came out and looked to ruin Woden's hopes of a sweep. Tucker kept the Eagles scoreless. Reid Taylor did the same for Woden. The teams went 4 scoreless innings. In the 5th inning, Douglass would break through when Logan Lee hit a 2-run single with the bases loaded. Woden would add two more in the sixth and then Tucker would get the last out on a strike out to seal the 4-0 win and tie up the series.
After fans and players were given 30 minutes to find relief from the heat, the two teams went back at it. The Indians came out hot in Game 3 with two runs in the first inning. Many Woden fans could be seen hanging their heads and it is not hard to think they had visions of last year's regional final in their heads.
The players though composed themselves after a speech from head coach Brad Stevens. They answered back with one of their own in the first and then in the second they took the lead with two more runs. The Eagles had all the momentum they needed. They would not trail again in the game.
That doesn't mean the game was sealed. Woden was up 7-4. Douglass loaded the bases. Stevens would bring in the star of game 1, Shifflet who would strike out three strait batters to end the threat. Woden would add the final run in the 7th and win the deciding game 8-4.
This is the first trip to the state tournament for Woden. The semi final for Woden will be on June 6. The time has not been determined yet but it will be at either 3pm or 7 pm. All state games will be played at Dell Diamond in Round Rock.