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Pinellas has nation's best baseball, softball team

By JOHN SCHWARB

© St. Petersburg Times, published April 28, 2001


According to national polls, Pinellas County currently is home to America's top prep baseball and softball teams.

The Seminole baseball team has been atop Baseball America's poll since the beginning of the season (and remains No. 1 despite forfeiting 10 games for using an illegal player). And Countryside's 31-0 softball team rose to No. 1 Thursday in the USA Today/National Fastpitch Coaches Association poll.

"We heard about it through a fan who comes to all our games. He told us to check it out on the Web (nfca.org)," Countryside shortstop Kattrina Dowd said.

"It's an honor to be there. But we'd rather be there at the end of the season."

Three of the top four teams in the Class 5A state softball poll are ranked in the national poll. Chamberlain is No. 8 and could play Countryside on Thursday in the Region 3 semifinals. Naples is No. 10.

"It's pretty hard to keep something like that quiet," Countryside coach Scott Kitchen said. "It's nice."

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