The Wildcats beat Carbon Hill 12-4 and Glencoe 9-2 in Friday’s action to reach the Class 3A winners bracket final. They will play Winfield at 8:30 a.m. today.
Had White Plains lost Friday, it likely would have been playing a game scheduled to start at 9:30 p.m., but that actually started closer to 11 p.m.
Then, the Wildcats (45-8) might have had to come back early today.
“It’s definitely an advantage, with the weather being what it is,” White Plains coach Rachel Ford said. “With a regular situation, it’s good to be in the winners bracket, but especially now it’s huge to put ourselves in this situation.”
Because of anticipated rain today, the AHSAA had to tinker with schedules at all regional sites. At Liberty Park, the change was made while the Class 1A, 2A and 3A teams were playing the later session.
Losers bracket games that originally were scheduled for today in all three of those classifications had to be crammed into Friday night.
There was also a plan to jam winners bracket finals in at 11 p.m., but things got behind schedule. None could be started before the 11:30 p.m. cutoff.
That meant that winners like White Plains got the better of things, by far.
“It’s amazing,” senior shortstop Jordan Coleman said. “We can go get in the bed and get some rest.”
Coleman was a major reason why White Plains stayed in the winners bracket, hitting home runs in both games. She hit a 3-run home run against Glencoe and a 2-run shot against Carbon Hill.
She also slammed a 2-run double against Glencoe.
“I expect that out of Jordan,” Ford said. “I put a good bit of pressure on her, and she handles it. She’s a great team leader and always comes up with our big hits.
“Definitely, we wouldn’t be the same team without Jordan.”
Amber Greenwood added a 3-run double against Carbon Hill and a 2-run single against Glencoe, and Mikayla Owen added a 2-run single and a triple.
White Plains came into the regional determined to hit well.
“We had a whole week of practice, and all we did was hit, hit, hit,” Coleman said. “In the area tournament, we didn’t hit that well against Saks. Taylor West is a very good pitcher, and we didn’t produce like we should have against her.
“Coach Ford said that’s what we needed to work on, so we spent the whole week to work on our hitting.”
Anna Snider was the winning pitcher in both games with four strikesouts, and Greenwood worked the sixth and seventh innings against Glencoe.