Baylor and GPS Softball Have Combined to Win Last 10 State Titles
Chattanooga-(WDEF) They may play the Division two high school state softball tournament in Murfreesboro, but the state title runs through Chattanooga.
Baylor and GPS have combined to win every D-2 state championship since 2006.
And the two Scenic city rivals will be favored to win it all again this week at Spring Fling.
Baylor coach Kelli Smith doesn’t mind knowing that in order for the Red Raiders to win a state title, they’ll likely have to go through their big rival in GPS.
Said Smith:”The fact that we are two quality programs that are competing for a state championship every year on top of being each other’s big rival, it always makes for a fun week in Murfreesboro.”
Said GPS head coach Susan Crownover:”It can be gut-wrenching is what it can be. You know what’s coming in the lineup. You know Cheyenne Lindsey and Kamrie Rich are coming, and they’re not going away.”
Said Smith:”Somebody asked me a couple of years ago does it ever get old? Well of course not. Every year. Every team is different, and unique in its own special way.”
Crownover says the Baylor-GPS rivalry creates a lot of intensity, and Crownover
never tries to downplay that.
Said Crownover:”I’ve never been a coach that has said this is just another game. It’s not another game. It is GPS-Baylor. I think that’s the greatest part of athletics is getting excited about those games.”
Both coaches agree the academic standards at each school attract great athletes,
and Crownover says the city of Chattanooga also has an impact.
Said Crownover:”I think the biggest thing is our community, the softball community here is still very strong in bringing softball to Chattanooga, and selling Chattanooga to softball.”
Both schools display their state banners on their outfield fences, which can bring back tough memories for their rivals.
Said Smith:”I know there was one in 2014. That class of seniors. That would have been four in-a-row. That one was heart-breaking. Every time I see the ’14 banner on their fence and not on our fence, that one was tough yeah.”