HS Softball Playoffs: The Woodlands Moves on to Regional Semifinals

By: Julio Varguez
| Published 05/14/2022


MAGNOLIA, TX -- With a win last night, Grand Oaks was on a high as the game was about to start. They knew they had 7 hard innings ahead of them against the tough Woodlands team. The game was hosted on “neutral” ground and it was decided that Grand Oaks would be the home team, which means they would have the opportunity in the bottom of the inning to come back if needed.

The accurate Kourtney Bellinger once again hit the circle to start off for Grand Oaks, but during the series, each team have figured out the pitchers. The Woodlands didn’t waste any time as Kaelyn Zusi, who hit a grand slam at the end of the previous game, nukes one out of the park. This gave the Highlanders a quick lead but they didn’t stop there. Davis, Roberts and Vasel all bring in runs in the first inning for The Woodlands.

With a quick 6-0 lead, The Woodlands had a comfortable lead right off the bat. Coach Borths had his doubts about the quick lead saying that he, “felt good about it, that we were scoring runs, but I knew that they were going to come back.” He continued to say that they [Grand Oaks] is a “Gritty team, and had the confidence in the regular season and last night [to come back].”

Coach Borths wasn’t wrong about his assumptions as Grand Oaks rallied up and tied the game by the bottom of the 2nd inning.

With every advancement, The Woodlands couldn’t shake the Grand Oaks’ momentum. They would score 2 more in the 3rd and Grand Oaks would close out the inning with the lead, 9-8. But once again in the 4th, The Woodlands would hit a hot streak and pop off 4 more runs including a bomb out of the park from Chesney Davis.

This would give The Woodlands the lead once again and a good cushion just in case Grand Oaks gets hot again, like last night. Although, up by 3 against Grand Oaks, The Woodlands would have to tighten up and not have any errors.

Again, a roller coaster of emotions for both teams was happening. Grand Oaks would get hot and get close, then The Woodlands would make up for it. Grand Oaks retired The Woodlands in the 5th and 6th without allowing any runs. They would however score 2 more runs making the score close yet again. But going into the 7th inning The Woodlands had to make some moves in order to stay alive.

Tightening up their grip on the bat, The Woodlands was able to pull off another small rally, bringing in 2 more runs and giving them yet another small cushion. As Grand Oaks tried to rally again, it was cut short by the pitching and defense of The Woodlands. Grand Oaks would finish their season at Magnolia High School against their fellow district teammates.

Both teams battled out and with 2 final scores looking like football scores, it could have gone either way. The bats were hot Friday and Saturday and it came down to small errors and pitching. There is no doubt these 2 teams came to play and they both left everything on the field.

The Woodlands moves on to the Regional Semifinals and will face the Midway Panthers in the next round.

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