When it comes to North Coast Section softball, no H-DNL team does it better than the Hoopa Warriors.
The Little 4 program won a second straight and league-record seventh all-time section championship on Friday evening, defeating St. Helena 3-1 in Hoopa in the Division-5 championship game.
Senior Savannah Colegrove is the lone holdover from the 2019 section winning team, which was the last time the playoffs were held, and has played an integral role all season for this team, both in the circle and at the plate.
And that continued on Friday with an inspirational team-leading performance.
Colegrove struck out 11 on her way to the win and also broke a late tie with a two-run home run in the bottom of the fifth inning.
“Savannah really stood out today,” head coach Ryan Colegrove said. “She pitched a hell of a game.”
There are a lot of things to like about the senior’s game.
“She keeps her composure,” the head coach added. “She’s got a very strong mental game. And on offense she was just crushing the ball.”
Savannah finished 2-for-3 with the home run and a double, driving in her sister Tatianna in the bottom of the first inning after the visitors had taken an early one-run lead.
Roxie Robinson hit a lead-off single in the fifth and was advanced to second by Bella Valentine, before Savannah’s big game-winning blast.
“What can I say, all their hard work paid off,” Ryan Colegrove said of her players. “They all did so well. I’m still enjoying the moment. I’m kind of speechless.”
Winning an NCS championship is big for any school or program, but you get the feeling it means a little more to the Hoopa community, who showed up in large numbers to witness the Warriors’ historic record championship.
And that will serve as a huge inspiration to the young girls in the area.
“It means so much,” the head coach said. “We’re giving our young people something to look up to. It really means a lot to our community. I think it gives them hope.”
The head coach also praised her players for the example they’re setting off the field too, including in the classroom and within their community.
“They’re very culturally involved,” she said.
The fact that Colegrove and her staff of assistants have now won back-to-back NCS titles with two very different rosters also speaks volumes for the job they have done.
Tatianna and Nalani Colegrove each also had a base hit in Friday’s win, while the team defense continued to play a role, as it has throughout the playoff run.
“Our defense was there for Savannah,” Ryan Colegrove said. “They did what they were asked to do. They had her back.”
The Hoopa girls will now advance to next week’s NorCal Regional playoffs, which begin on Tuesday.
They will find out their seed and opponent on Sunday evening, and the head coach is hoping for at least one home game.