The Enochs and Gregori High softball teams each won on Thursday, setting up a showdown for the Modesto Metro Conference title.
The Eagles, alone in first place with a 10-0 league mark, defeated Modesto 14-2 at Rainbow Fields. Meanwhile, 100 feet away, Gregori beat Johansen 11-0 to improve to 9-1. The teams will meet Tuesday at Enochs High at 3:45 p.m.
The Eagles won the teams' first matchup this season 10-0 on a no-hitter by ace Cheyenne Harper, who signed Tuesday to play next season at Alabama A&M. She'll start once more against Gregori, while junior Kristin Borst will toe the rubber for the Jags.
So, with the outcome of their games firmly in hand by the middle innings Thursday, did either coach sneak a peek next door to see how their rival was faring?
"No, we weren't eyeing that score," said Enochs coach Tim Williams.
"No," echoed Gregori coach Juliana Santos. "One game at a time."
But now that Gregori versus Enochs is the next up, the coaches can turn their full attention to this MMC showdown.
"We're excited about it, don't get me wrong," Williams said. "We expect a good game."
So does Santos. In fact, the Jaguars' coach has been working on changing her team's mental outlook ever since that March 28 defeat.
"I think that first game was a fluke," said Santos. "We're a really young team. That's not an excuse, but they got up on us and we freaked out a little bit. But I think I've fixed it. We're really fired up. We didn't show up to play last time. We're going to show up to play."
Gregori showed up on Thursday, scoring five runs in the second inning getting a key two-run single by Melanie Menor and a two-run double from Morgan Modesto to take control.
Across the complex, visiting Enochs saw a 3-0 lead cut to 3-2 in the bottom of the first, then scored twice in the third, once in the fourth and broke the game open with five in the fifth. Brooke Bettencourt had a two-run single in the frame and Taylor Wilson added a two-run double.
Harper was 3 for 5 with a pair of RBIs, while Angelique Salinas was 2 for 4 with a double, triple and three RBIs.