BRANDON - The area's best two softball teams lived up to their state-ranked billings Monday when Durant visited Bloomingdale. Runs were scarce and Bloomingdale (ranked 10th in Class 6A) made the most of its chances, topping Durant (No. 2 in Class 5A) 1-0.
Bloomingdale freshman Hayley Gerun singled to right to score Allison Kime from second in the bottom of the sixth inning for the game's lone run. It was all the offense Bulls pitcher Nicole Anderson would need. She threw a complete game, allowing six hits and striking out six. Durant pitcher Krista Olson was solid as well, allowing four hits and striking out nine.
Riverview, meanwhile, wrapped up the Class 6A, District 5 top seed last Friday with a 5-0 win against Sarasota Riverview. The Sharks will not only have the advantage of the top seeding but will be the district tournament host when the event begins Monday. Senior pitcher Beth DiPietro threw a complete game, allowing four hits. The Cougars offense came courtesy of three walks and an error in the first inning and a hit and walk from Lindsey Hurner later in the game.
BOYS TENNIS: Durant not only dominated the Class 3A, District 12 tournament April 21-22, it swept the competition. The Cougars won every singles and doubles match they participated in to advance to regional play, which begins today. Shaun Young, Alex Vuckovic, Brad Henderson, Justin Whitford and Breton Assing all won district titles in individual singles play and Young and Vuckovic won at No. 1 doubles while Henderson and Whitford captured a title at No. 2 doubles. The victory earned the Cougars their second straight district championship.
BASEBALL: Bloomingdale got the best of Brandon in eight innings last Friday in a 3-2 victory. Tied at 2 in the eighth, Chris Woody's double down the third base line scored Ryan Strauss to give Bloomingdale the win. Earlier in the game, with the Bulls ahead 2-0, Brandon tied the score on RBI singles from Paul Cruz and Tyler Scott.
Bloomingdale starting pitcher Paul McClay allowed three hits in six innings, giving way to reliever A.J. Kime, who picked up the win. Brandon starter Blake Tillett suffered the loss, throwing four innings, striking out four and walking four.
BOYS BASKETBALL: Durant's R.L. Bond led all scorers with 22 points but it wasn't enough to help the Hillsborough All-Stars as they lost 121-101 to the Pinellas All-Stars in the All-Star Challenge last Friday in Largo. The game pits the two counties' best senior players against each other.
Bond's back-to-back three pointers and two free throws to open the second half led to a 71-71 tie but the Pinellas team controlled the game from that point. Brandon's J.J. Turner also had a strong game, scoring 18.
ALUMNI: Former Brandon pitcher Eric Beattie has earned Sunshine State Conference Pitcher of the Week honors. A University of Tampa sophomore, Beattie improved to 11-0 on the season after he pitched a five-hit, complete-game shutout of Division II No.1 Florida Southern last Friday in Lakeland. UT won 1-0 on an unearned run in the seventh inning. In nine innings, Beattie permitted just five singles and one walk, while striking out eight. The complete game was Beattie's fourth of the season, while the shutout was his third.