BREVARD, N.C. — High school softball teams are playing their final games of the regular season now, but at one North Carolina high school, everybody hit the ball out of the park with what happened before the game.
The game at Brevard High School was special for two girls. It was Senior Night for the Blue Devils, but only one of the players honored was in a Brevard uniform.
Brevard center fielder Lauren DuBreuil was the only senior in the spotlight until she and her teammates stepped up to the plate.
After Brevard honored its senior star, there was an unexpected announcement.
“Lady Devils would like to recognize another senior who embodies the true spirit of a hero,” the announcer said as Brevard paid tribute to an opposing player for her fight on and off the field.
“Her story is very inspirational. I didn’t, I had no idea last time we played them that she was on the team. It’s just amazing how far that she’s pushed herself even with this illness,” DuBreuil said of North Henderson right fielder Tori Renfroe.
Renfroe has Von Hippel-Lindau syndrome. VHL is a rare disease that causes tumors and often leads to cancer. Her dad died from it, and she has already lost sight in one of her eyes.
Renfroe clearly did not know what to do as her teammates urged her onto the infield.
“Throughout this battle, Tori has inspired everyone she knows, which includes the Lady Devils,” the announcer said.
Renfroe called the tribute touching.
“I find a lot of support, apparently not only in my school, but just the community as a whole, so, it’s been really great,” a teary-eyed Renfroe said.
Brevard won, 24-2. But Renfroe still has a lot to look forward to. She’s headed to Western Carolina University’s Honors College, where she plans to major in business and law. Her goal is to be an attorney.