Great Bend High School’s softball doubleheader against Hutchinson today at the Great Bend Sports Complex marks the end of the regular season for the Lady Panthers.
A year ago, Great Bend ended its regular season, splitting with Hutchinson on the road. Hutch won the first game 9-8 and the Lady Panthers regrouped to win the second game 4-0.
Great Bend is in a Class 5A regional with Goddard, Hays, Liberal, Maize South, Goddard-Eisenhower and Valley Center.
As of Monday morning, Eisenhower was a likely No. 1 seed with Great Bend tied with Maize South as a No. 2 seed by win percentage.
“With so many teams missing games because of the weather, every game is huge,” GBHS head coach Carrie Minton said. “We want to host a regional game. That’s the biggest objective.
“Goddard-Eisenhower played on Monday and they played Maize South (on Wednesday). Maize South plays Goddard on Friday, who a lot can change between now and then.”
Great Bend will look to get pitching gems from starters Hunter Middleton and Braylin Bretz.
Middleton threw a no-hitter against Liberal and had 18 strikeouts in her last outing against Hays on Saturday.
Bretz had four strikeouts, scattering five hits and allowing two runs at Hays.
Middleton also leads six Great Bend batters that have a batting average better than .350. She sits at .462 (12 of 26).
Hannah Mauler is second (.452), Stephanie Morrison is third (.450), Dakote Sanders is fourth (.429), Samantha Dreiling is fifth (.379) and McKenna Mauler is sixth (.362).
The Lady Panthers, who are 15-3 overall this season, captured a share of the Western Athletic Conference title along with Garden City.
Both teams finished with 7-1 conference records after the Lady Buffaloes swept Hays, 13-2 and 13-4 on Tuesday.