DALTON, Ga. (WRCB) -- It took four tries, but Northwest Whitfield finally broke through against region rival Heritage.
Now the Lady Bruins need to do it again if they want a No. 1 seed in the upcoming state tournament.
BriLeigh Baggett struck out six in a complete game effort and Bayli Cruse drove in a pair of runs to lead third-ranked Northwest Whitfield to a 4-3 win over the second-ranked Generals in the Region 7-AAAA tournament finals Thursday night at Heritage Point Park.
The loss was the first of the double-elimination tournament for Heritage, forcing a deciding rematch on the Lady Bruins' home field Saturday at noon. The winner will earn the region's top seed for the state playoffs and the right to host in the first two rounds.
River Ridge will be the region's No. 3 seed after losing to Northwest Whitfield (27-6) 2-1 earlier Thursday.
Cruse's sacrifice fly opened the scoring in the first, but Lauren Lawson's two-run homer quickly put Heritage (25-7) on top in the bottom half of the inning. Cruse struck again in the third with an RBI-double to snap a 2-all tie, then Ashley Conner capped the three-run frame with an RBI-single.
The Generals pulled within one run on a sac fly in the fourth, but had a last-inning rally thwarted in the seventh when Alyssa Ward made a diving catch to rob Brooklyn Frazier of what would have likely been a lead-off triple.
Baggett slammed the door shut down the stretch, striking out three in the final two frames.