By SCOTT PURKS, STEVE LEE, RODNEY PAGE, Times staff
© St. Petersburg Times, published May 2, 2001
TAMPA -- There wasn't one hero, or one goat, after Tampa Bay Tech defeated Clearwater 6-5 in 10 innings in a Class 4A, Region 3 quarterfinal.
You want heroes? Take your pick.
Tech's Chrystal Ihm threw the complete game on an injured left foot, striking out 12 while giving up just one earned run.
Then there was Tech catcher Ashley Alpizar, who with two out in the bottom of the ninth stole third and raced home on a Clearwater throwing error to tie it at four. There was also Teaqua Gunn and Stephanie Barnes, two relatively inexperienced players who scored the tying and winning runs.
You want key mistakes? Both teams made their share, but Clearwater made six crucial ones in the final three innings, all by different players.
No doubt the fact the Tornadoes led by a run going into the three final at-bats for Tech made it hurt that much more.
In the bottom of the 10th, Gunn walked, then scored the tying run on a three-base throwing error over the first baseman's head. The hitter on the play, Barnes, reached third and scored after an infield dribbler was scooped up and thrown over the catcher's head.
"(Clearwater) gave us numerous opportunities and we finally took advantage of them," Tampa Bay Tech coach Keensha Parham said. "Both teams made key errors at the wrong times, and it just worked for us there at the end."
Tech (17-5) moves on to play at East Bay in a regional semifinal on Thursday. -- SCOTT PURKS
LAND O'LAKES -- Jen Savage got sick several times before the game but never thought about sitting out Tuesday's game against Leto.
Good thing for the Gators.
The catcher had three hits and a walk and drove in three runs, including the game-winner in the bottom of the seventh inning of Land O'Lakes' 7-6 win.
The Gators twice took two-run leads, but the Falcons (8-17) went ahead 5-4 with three runs in the fifth on Sabrina Bertrandt's two-run double and an RBI single by Alexis Martinez.
The Gators regained the lead in the bottom of the fifth on Hausman's RBI double and a wild pitch that scored Erica Skillman.
Casie Green's RBI single in the sixth tied it for Leto to set the stage for Savage's heroics.
Hausman led off the seventh with a single, advanced to third on Skillman's bunt and a throwing error by Green, the catcher. Savage then singled over Martinez in left. -- STEVE LEE
East Bay made short work of Gibbs, reeling off an 11-0 victory to advance to the region semifinals Thursday. The Indians (25-4) will host Tampa Bay Tech, 6-5 winners over Clearwater, for the right to play in the region finals on Saturday. -- TIMES STAFF
ST. PETERSBURG -- Maura Brosnan allowed only two hits and struck out 13 to lead Tampa Catholic to a 1-0 win over St. Petersburg Catholic.
The Crusaders (16-12) overcame a solid pitching performance by Angela Vidal and scored in the top of the seventh. The Crusaders will play the winner of Palmetto and Avon Park on Thursday in the regional semifinal.
"This seems to be the only way we can win," Tampa Catholic coach Pete Wagner said. "It's either 1-0 or we're in trouble. We've just been a little out of synch lately."
In the seventh, Ashley Hubbell led off with a single. Lauren Shepard followed with a bunt single, and Leigh Montejo bunted the runners to second and third. Marissa Menendez then hit a ground ball to second base. Laura Timberlake threw home, but the ball popped out of Jenny-Ann Feola's glove, allowing Hubbell to score. -- RODNEY PAGE
Academy of the Holy Names was a big favorite over Osceola coming into its game and the Jaguars let everyone know why very quickly. Academy (19-8) pulled out a 10-0 win to advance to the semifinals Thursday night when it will travel to either Cardinal Mooney or Mulberry. -- TIMES STAFF
At Bradenton, Berkeley Prep pulled everything it could to get by St. Stephens, including an early triple play to set the tone. The Bucs (19-8) cruised after that, winning the game 5-4 to advance to Thursday's semifinal in which they will travel to play Orlando Lake Highland Prep. -- TIMES STAFF
Kristi Korman recorded her 10th win of the season, and hit a double to help her own cause, as Seminole Presbyterian defeated Lakeside Christian 16-2 to advance to the region semifinals. The Lancers (15-6) will play either Out-of-Door Christian or Southwest Florida Christina on Thursday. -- TIMES STAFF
Keswick Christian cruised to a 20-0 victory over Bayshore Christian in a regional quarterfinal. The Crusaders had 16 hits and Lindsey Crosby pitched a one-hitter. Bayshore finished the season 13-10. -- TIMES STAFF