There are amazing days on the softball diamond, and then there's the senior day that Boston College third baseman Tatiana Cortez enjoyed on Sunday.
The day started bittersweet for Cortez, whose father, Ronny, was unable to attend the pregame family festivities due to a serious injury suffered two months ago. Ronny, a 24-year veteran of the Houston Police Department, was instead represented by over 100 fellow police officers, who came out to support Cortez and the team.
What's more, the Eagles dubbed the contest against NC State "Back the Blue Day" to honor Mr. Cortez as he recovered from his injuries sustained while investigating a burglary.
"It was kind of comforting to know that all these people have my back even though my dad can't be here, obviously," Tatiana Cortez told NBC Boston after the game. "But I know he's watching somewhere."
"I want to thank every officer," Tatiana's mother Sheri said. "The blue family is long, and we feel it."
After that emotional beginning, Boston College found itself in a tough spot down 6-1 in the middle of the fourth. But drawing some of the strength and courage from first responders like Ronny Cortez, the Eagles clawed back.
A run in the bottom of the fourth made it a four-run game, before a one-out single brought Cortez to the plate. Sure enough, the senior delivered, blasting a two-run homer to cut the deficit to 6-4.
But the storybook day was just beginning.
Cortez was followed up by catcher Jordan Chimento, who made it back-to-back homers and a one-run game.
Still trailing 6-5 in the seventh, Chloe Sharabba led off with a single to bring the winning run to the plate. That runner, of course, was Cortez.
And she delivered, blasting an opposite-field homer over the wall in right-center, sending Shea Field into a state of delirium.
"I started crying, but it was more of like a happy cry," Cortez said to NBC Boston.
"It felt amazing. Also for it to be Back the Blue Day, it felt awesome."
We've seen some pretty remarkable storylines through the years, but a two-homer game, including the walk-off, with that much emotion surrounding your final home game? Cortez just might have had the most incredible day we've ever witnessed.
Thank you to NBC Boston for sharing this great story.