There's a stench coming from the Salpointe Catholic dugout.
"It's pretty rank in there," said Lancers coach Stacy Schulte.
"You don't want to know how smelly it is in there," said pitcher Emily Griffin.
Well, Salpointe hasn't washed its jerseys since losing to Canyon del Oro 4-3 on April 23.
"It's smelly, but true," Schulte said. "We played so well against CDO that the girls just felt there was a different kind of energy, and since then they haven't washed their uniforms."
It seems to be working, as the No. 12 Lancers advanced to the Division II state quarterfinals with a 9-5 win over No. 4 Ironwood Ridge at Cherry Field Wednesday night.
Salpointe (20-8) has won seven of its last eight games and now faces No. 1 Peoria Sunrise Mountain in Phoenix on Monday with a spot in the semifinals on the line.
The Lancers fell into a quick 3-0 hole after the first inning, and trailed 3-1 entering the top of the seventh inning. But, Salpointe caught fire, batted around its order and rallied for eight runs and five hits in the last inning.
"Well, talk about late-game heroics," Schulte said. "You know what, the thing I'm most proud of with this team is they never give up. They're never down and out, they keep plugging away every single inning. We've been down several times this year and we just keep battling back."
In the first inning, Erin Rocker hit a two-run double off Griffin, giving the Nighthawks a 3-0 lead. It was the second hit Griffin allowed that inning, but she only gave up three more hits to Ironwood Ridge the rest of the way.
Salpointe pulled a run back in the bottom of the first.
"She struggled in the first inning a little bit," said catcher Denae Fisher. "They got a few hits, then after that she shut it down and came back, and they couldn't score anything after that first inning. We had her back the whole game."
The Nighthawks tacked on two runs in the bottom of the seventh inning, but it was too little, too late.
So, with that, Salpointe's jerseys will go at least another four days without being washed.
"No," Griffin said, "we can't wash them now."
Ironwood Ridge (24-10) will play an elimination game against No. 9 Buckeye Verrado on Saturday at 11:30 a.m. in Phoenix.