After coming back from a three-run deficit in the seventh inning, the game went to extra innings where a runner is automatically placed on second base.
With the game still tied in the bottom of the eighth, Brandee Godfrey led off the inning. The senior proceeded to come through with one of the most important at bats of the year for Woodland as she laid a perfectly placed bunt down the first base line to move the winning run to third base. The runner scored on a wild pitch to the very next batter and Woodland walked off with the win to move on to the state playoffs.
Godfrey’s sacrifice bunt was one of the highlights of a very successful career for Woodland’s second baseman, and that career is far from over as Godfrey has signed to play softball for Georgia Highlands in the spring of 2015.
“I wouldn’t change it for the world,” Godfrey said of her high school career. “I was positive that I wanted to continue my softball career. I’m not ready to give it up after high school.
“I kind of want to use [Georgia Highlands] to get my feet wet and get used to college and get used to the workload.
“It’s local and I think that it will really mature me and get me ready for a bigger college afterward.”
Godfrey will be sorely missed for Woodland as head coach Colman Roberts will have a tough task replacing his second baseman.
“I’ve been with Brandee for a lot of time. We’ve spent a lot time with the family and playing together every weekend. She’s gotten so much better. She’s hard working, a vocal leader. She’s going to do well,” Roberts said. “It’s hard to play second in softball. I played there my whole life. You’re reading bunts and all kind of various situations. You have to cover first all the time. It’s hard to play second. Brandee stepped in, she started in left field and then moved to second, and she did a great job. Replacing her is going to be hard.”
“Brandee is hard working and dedicated. She is the prototype player you love to coach. That’s what it comes down to,” Godfrey’s travel ball coach Jeff Michaud said. “She’s a joy to coach and that’s the nicest compliment to have players that are like that.”
For Godfrey, signing to play college softball is a dream come true and an accomplishment she has been working to achieve for almost her entire life.
“Ever since sixth grade, Brandee has always wanted to go to college and play softball,” Kenneth Godfrey, Brandee’s father, said. “I started coaching Brandee when she was 3 years old. I’ve coached her ever since all the way until last year, but as far as all the skills are concerned, it was all her. I couldn’t keep her off the field. She put in a lot of hard work and preparation for everything. Words cannot describe how proud I am of her.”
Godfrey has worked hard in the classroom as well and has big plans for her future after Georgia Highlands.
“I kind of want to go to [Georgia Highlands] and then I’m going to transfer to UAB for medicine. I want to study neonatology because I want to be a baby doctor. After two years, I will transfer to UAB and medical school,” she said of her plans. “I asked [Georgia Highlands head softball coach Melissa Wood] about it often. She’s really good with the coaches and everybody at UAB, so that will be a good bridge for me to go over there. I know she’ll take really good care of me and help me pursue my dream over there as well.”
Godfrey’s family and her coaches also are happy she will be close to home for two more years.
“Her being close by for two years is going to allow me to be able to attend games and I feel a lot more comfortable with her staying close to home for two more years,” Kenneth Godfrey said.
“I’m a little bit nervous, but more than anything, I’m excited to start the next chapter in my life,” Brandee said. “I’m stoked that Ashley [Jordan] is going to go so I’ll have someone to know there and we are already really good friends.”
Even with new memories on the diamond ahead, Godfrey says she will always remember the North Paulding game and all the fond memories of her high school career at Woodland.
“Definitely that game. It was just the atmosphere of the game and after we won, everybody was just going crazy,” Godfrey said when asked what she’ll remember most. “It was loud and we were all hopping and jumping and the atmosphere of the game was awesome and it really made it fun for me.”