Deerfield beat Valwood 9-4 in Game 2 of the GISA AAA state baseball championship Saturday to sweep the Valiants and claim the title.
"Just everyday at practice, we all came out with an intensity, ready to improve every single day," says senior catcher Ryan Toole. "It paid off in the end."
"It's a feeling like no other," says senior pitcher Austin Fallaw, who started the game for the Knights. "Just the fact that we did it is crazy, and all these guys, we all had a role and we all played our role."
DWS head coach Jonathan Davis says the win is a credit to his team buying into their first-year head coach.
"We had a lot of moving parts to our team, a lot of people moving in and out, a lot of pitchers and position guys," Davis says. "So they really really bought in, and it ended up paying off for us."
Deerfield led 5-3 after four innings, and were able to continue to plug away for the final two innings.
Valwood lived up to their name, fighting valiantly until the end. The Valiants loaded the bases with two outs in the bottom of the seventh, but Steven Williams was able to get the final out on a check swing strikeout to ignite the dogpile.
"With the exception of a few plays here and there, we played probably as good as we can play," says Valwood head coach Robert Shipman. "Considering that you're playing a team whose record is indicative of who they are. They're the number one seed, they're a great program. It was tough coming in knowing that. You have to go straight out and snatch it from them. Unfortunately, we weren't able to snatch it from them today. I got to tip my hat to them."
All season, Davis has said the Knights can be really good if they throw strikes. They did Saturday, and the offense created plenty enough offense for the win.
"Our starter also did enough to get us through, grind us through some innings," he says. "We continued to have good at bats. We've got 90% of our team coming back. We're going to enjoy this for a few days, and then start our summer program next week and try to get better."
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