Hilliard Darby High School softball coach Kevin Moody has been around for his fair share of memorable winning moments.

Hilliard Darby High School softball coach Kevin Moody has been around for his fair share of memorable winning moments.

Among his many accomplishments is a resume which includes a Division I state title won in 2000. And May 21 after the Panthers came from behind to stun Westerville South 4-3 in a district final, three players dumped a cooler full of cold water on him.

"That's so old," a drenched Moody said.

The atmosphere was a dramatic change from the previous six innings as the Wildcats, on the strength of a superb pitching performance from ace Ashley Byers, looked well on their way to winning the district championship

But Carli Fernandez slid into home plate in the seventh inning and was declared safe after an initial out call capped off an improbable comeback from three runs down in the final inning.

The outcome turned a once gloomy group of Panthers into an ecstatic one and transformed the Wildcats' cheers to tears.

"My head's still spinning," Fernandez said of the game's final moments. "The intensity in the dugout just kicked up a notch."

"It's huge," Moody said. "It's been three years since we've been this close to anything, and to have the kids fight the way they did and fall down and come back is such a huge part of this. A lot of these kids have never been around when we had it. For them to get this they should have all the confidence in the world. That's hard to do in a regular season game, let alone a tournament game."

Clutching her district championship medal, winning pitcher Kellie Roudabush simply basked in the moment.

"It feels so good," she said. "This is exciting."