It was a game worth waiting for.
The Unaka softball team outlasted North Greene for a 2-1 victory in a 13-inning affair to claim the Region 1-A Championship and secure a home substate game on Friday on Stoney Creek.
The Lady Rangers will host Tellico Plains on Saturday at 7 p.m., with a trip to Murfreesboro and the state tournament on the line. North Greene will travel to Sales Creek for their sectional matchup.
On Friday, however, Unaka had unfinished business in the region tournament after Mother Nature had pushed the game back two days. It was a defensive battle from the opening pitch.
Through seven innings, neither team was able to break onto the scoreboard despite putting runners in scoring position at one point or another. In the first three extra innings, nothing was doing for the offenses.
North Greene struck first in the 11th inning as the plated the automatic runner as the game had moved to the international tiebreaker. Unaka, however, tied it up in the home side of the frame as Katlyn Weaver pushed Sarah Tipton across the plate to force the 12th.
After neither team was able to get anything on the board in the 12th, Unaka’s Lilly Kiser sent a hit to center field to plate the winning run.
In the pitching circle, Corie Schuettler pitched a gem of a game as she allowed just three hits over the course of 13 innings. She struck out 13 batters.