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FHSI Challenge Championship & Day 5

Pine Crest 3

Taravella 2

The script for the Championship Game could not have been written any better. A rematch from earlier in the week that ended with a walk off win. Sounds like something from a movie, but it was reality for the Pine Crest Panthers. They defeated the Taravella Trojans for the second time in four days to take home the 1st place trophy.

The Panthers found themselves in an early hole as Taravella came out of the gates hot. Jack Sinclair singled to lead off the game, and was sacrificed to second by Justin Rivera. Eddie Ayala followed with a single to put runners on the corners. It was then up to Nathan Housen to deliver a single that scored Sinclair and moved Ayala to third. Johnny MCDonald then got in the act with a single of his own to score Ayala, and make it 2-0.

Pine Crest starter Jordan Schulefand would retire the next eight hitters in order to take the game to the bottom of the third. He then singled in the inning, and came around to score on a Jared deFaria sac fly. After three more scoreless innings from Schulefand in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings, the Panthers were able to tie the game. With two outs in the sixth, Matthe Fine singled and moved to second on an error. Ryan Keenan then loaded the bases with a single, setting the stage for Samuel Brody. The nine-hole hitter came through with a base hit to knot the game up at two apiece.

Drama ensued in the seventh as the Trojans were finally able to get back on Schulefand, drawing a walk and hitting two singles. A caught stealing kept the bases from being loaded, which would be key. Relief pitcher Jake Solomon came on and allowed a hit, which this time did load the bases. However a groundball to third ended the threat and left three runners stranded.

In the bottom of the seventh, Schulefand led things off with a single. A walk to the dangerous Michael Rothenberg put two men on, followed by Jared deFaria getting plunked by a pitch to load the bases. The game would end in anti-climatic fashion, as an errant pickoff throw to third base allowed Schulefand to score.

The Panthers' starter had a final line of 6.2 innings, seven hits, two runs and six strikeouts. He was also 3-4 at the plate with two runs scored to cap off a tremendous performance. Jack Sinclair and Eddie Ayala were both 2-4 with a run scored to lead the Trojans.


Miami Palmetto 2

Cypress Bay 0

The Palmetto Panthers ended their tournament on a high note, defeating the Cypress Bay Lightning in a 2-0 shutout.

Alex Castaneda singled and stole second to put himself in scoring position early on. He was rewarded with a run after a fielding error by the Cypress Bay second baseman. The game would remain at 1-0 until the fourth when the Panthers struck again. Austin Taylor sent a ball to the outfield, scoring Charles Kavalir on a sacrifice fly, making it 2-0.

Two runs was plenty for Panthers starter Ryan MacInnes, who threw five innings of one hit baseball. He also walked one and struck out three. The sixth inning was completed by Carlos Teixeira, who then ceded his spot to Austin Malone, who earned the save.

Nick Labrada was the only player to reach base twice in the game (single, walk), and he also drove in one. Both teams finished the week with 2-2 records.


Mourning 9

South Dade 7

The Mourning Sharks saved their best game of the tournament for Friday, earning an impressive 9-7 win over the South Dade Buccaneers.

Mourning received a gutty start from Thomas Blythe. The righty threw all seven innings, scattering six hits and walking six. He allowed seven runs, but only one run counted as earned against him. Blythe also tallied six strikeouts in the game.

After falling behind 3-1 after two innings, the Sharks exploded for seven runs in the third. They sent thirteen players to the plate in the inning, and collected five hits, three walks, a hit by pitch and an error. The highlight came from a bases clearing, three-RBI double from Fabian Ortega. Once the dust settled in the inning, Mourning had an 8-3 lead.

South Dade made a valiant comeback effort, scoring four in the fourth. Justin Clements led the way with a two-run single, making it a 8-7 ballgame. Mourning was able to get an insurance run back in the fifthon a Patrick Ramallo RBI, making the final of 9-7.

Jose Marquez and Michael Gayo each reached base three times to lead the Shark attack. Jorge Torres and Luis Ramos each collected two hits for the Bucs. Both teams finish the week with identical 1-3 records.


Bishop Moore 7

Westfield 3

The Bishop Moore Hornets wrapped a great week on Friday morning, defeating the Westfield Bulldogs by a score of 7-3.

A two run single by Weston Eberly, and a smart baserunning play from Dale Thomas gave the Hornets a 3-0 advantage after two innings. They would kick another field goal in the fourth inning thanks to two hits and a costly error that allowed two runs to score. Westfield made it interesting in the fifth when they scored three runs themselves, but the Hornets would not relinquish their lead. After adding one in the bottom of the fifth, they held on for the 7-3 win.

Justin Pope, McGwire Holbrook and Jack McRae combined to tame the Bulldogs. Pope earmed the win with three innings of shutout baseball, allowing three hits and striking out three. McRae was perfect in his two innings of work to close it out, also tallying three punchouts. Connor Scheitzach was the top performer on offense, going 3-3 with a double and two runs scored.

Bishop Moore ended the week 3-1, while Westfield will travel back to Virginia with a 1-3 mark.


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