Meghan Luebbert has a knack for lightening the mood.
Before the Pioneers could string together a three run fourth inning, which led to a 4-0 win over the Cougars in the first round of the 5A playoffs, they were almost playing from behind.
But a spectacular play by the Pioneers center fielder kept Mountain View off the board and eased a Sandy dugout ripe with anxiety.
'Meghan's amazing catch in center field started the rally,' Sandy outfielder Molly Nutt said. 'It got our team more pumped up, and everything got started.
'After that, everything just worked out perfectly.'
The Cougars three-hitter led off a fourth inning, which was constantly on the verge of disaster.
Kylie Durre drove the Sammie Byron offering to center field. Off the bat, it appeared to be a can of corn for Luebbert, as she ranged to her right. But the ball carried and continued to carry, bringing Luebbert to the wall.
Durre was about to break a scoreless tie, but Luebbert reached over the fence and robbed the potential home run. As she caught the ball, the senior toppled over the collapsable fence but triumphantly raised her glove, signaling she made the catch.
The Pioneers responded to Luebbert's play by scoring three runs in the bottom half of the inning.
Feeling relaxed, Byron delivered a two out RBI hit with a runner in scoring position, something Sandy had failed to do in two previous innings. Nutt executed a squeeze play, which led to two more scores.
Luebbert's play saved a run, but had also lifted Sandy's spirits.
'We were upbeat. We were being a lot louder. And then our bats started to get going because of Meghan Luebbert, because of that play,' Byron said.