CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The Roane County softball team finds itself in territory on which it has never tread in its 19 years of existence.
The Raiders are having their best season in school history and are one of two undefeated teams left in the state, joining Class A Valley (Fayette).
Roane continued its perfect season Wednesday, improving to 16-0 after knocking off Charleston Catholic 9-1 at Little Creek Park Field in South Charleston on Wednesday.
Despite their huge success, the Raiders not only have never made it to the State Tournament, they've yet to win the Region 1, Section 2 title. Ritchie County has won the previous 23 sectional championships.
"This is our 19th year as a school, and we have never been," said Coach Sam Salvucci, who is in his 14th season guiding the Raiders.
"We get Ritchie (County) in the section. They have always been our roadblock. We have never won a sectional yet. Maybe this will be the year, I don't know."
The players know what stands in front of them in Ritchie, but want desperately to end the streak and get past the Rebels and perhaps even further.
"That is all we talk about," Roane pitcher Casey Lassiter said. "We want to get to states. It would mean everything. Of course Ritchie is really good. We have to get that out of our heads that we aren't going to win against them. We have to go in there confident."
Despite being the one of two unbeaten teams, the Raiders are ranked just seventh in Class AA in the latest West Virginia Sportswriters high school softball poll.
Part of that may be because of Ritchie's dominance over the section and the Rebels are currently ranked second with a 14-3 record.