The Tioga High School softball team's 26-2 loss to Elliot Christian of Lodi in its season finale on Thursday at Leon Rose Field didn't keep Mother Lode Christian from getting into the Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV playoffs.
Mother Lode was hoping Tioga would knock off Elliot, preventing a second-place tie and a coin flip for the Mountain Valley League's second and final playoff berth. Mother Lode and Elliot tied behind champion Turlock Christian and, this morning, Mother Lode won the flip when its athletic director, Branden Hall, called tails.
The Cougars (10-5) play Southern League runner-up LeGrand (18-10) at 4 p.m. Saturday at the Lodi Softball Complex.
Tioga (3-9 overall, 2-8 MVL) managed to push across two runs in the bottom of the fifth against Elliot when singles by Nicole Edwards and Jennifer Flores scored Shelbi Bodine and Edwards.
"We have a lot of young players, the majority of which are freshmen and sophomores," Tioga coach Jim Bodine said. "So I think we're looking forward to a few good years coming up."