At the beginning of the year, Greenbrier head coach Garrett Black wasn’t sure what kind of team he was going to have, especially with one senior on the squad.
The Lady Wolfpack showed what kind of team they are when they put on a hitting display in the first round of the Class AAAAA State Softball Playoffs against the Lady Wildcats of Richmond Hill.
Greenbrier (27-6) banged out 24 hits in Wednesday’s doubleheader, winning game one 12-5, taking the nightcap 11-2.
“We feel like we can compete with anybody, especially when we’re playing on our field,” said Black.
Up next will be Region 4’s No. 3 seed Ola, who will face Region 2’s No. 1 seed Lady Wolfpack on Wednesday.
Sophomore right fielder Maddie Hunt was a thorn in the Wildcats (17-13) side all night and provided the speed portion of the night. She had six hits in nine trips to the plate, including five bunt singles and a triple to the wall on her last at-bat of the night.
Kirsten McMonigle also provided some pop in the fourth inning of game one when the Lady Wolfpack broke open a tight one-run game with six runs. After an Emily Weatherman single started the inning and with the left fielder playing shallow, the freshman leadoff hitter smacked an RBI double over her head to ignite the rally.
“Coach Black finally let me hit and I wanted to show him I could do it,” McMonigle said. “I just put my faith in Coach Black and did what he wanted me to do.”
McMonigle scored on a Hunt bunt, Taylor Dupree reached on an error and two batters later Brooke Mackelburg put the finishing touches on the rally with a three-run homer over the right-centerfield fence.
McMonigle also made two spectacular diving catches of foul bunts during the doubleheader.
Pitchers Kirsten Titus (19-4) and Julie Underwood (8-2) earned wins with good outings. Titus struck out nine while giving up five runs, just two earned, in game one. Underwood followed and allowed two runs, one earned, in five innings of work while striking out three.
Hunt was excited by what she saw from the pitching staff.
“That was awesome,” Hunt said. “First it was Kirsten on fire and Julie, I saw her warming up, she was awesome too. I knew coming into this we were going to play a good game.”
The Lady Wildcats committed five errors in game one and four more in game two which led to four unearned runs. The Lady Wolfpack jumped out to a 4-0 lead, added two in the fourth and ended it early with five runs in the fifth.