CLEARWATER — Seminole's pregame routine in Wednesday's Class 5A, District 11 semifinal did not go exactly as planned. The bus did not show up in time, and the Warhawks arrived nearly an hour late.
The delay was enough that Wednesday's other semifinal between East Lake and Dunedin was pushed back to tonight at 7.
But on a night when some things went wrong, Seminole turned out to be all right.
The Warhawks, thanks to timely hitting and superb pitching, beat Clearwater 2-0. Seminole (22-4) advances to play in Friday's championship game at 7 at Jack Russell Stadium.
"We did what we do to win and move on," Warhawks coach Greg Olsen said.
To win, Seminole had to beat the Tornadoes' Kraig Richmond, the most dominant pitcher in the county the past few weeks. Entering Wednesday's game, Richmond had gone 27 straight innings without allowing a run, including an eight-inning no-hitter last week. He also had 47 strikeouts during that span.
But the Warhawks made contact and put things together in the third inning with three hits, the biggest one coming on a single by Gabe Martello that scored both runs after a throwing error.
"It was my time to shine," Martello said. "I saw a fastball and just tried to make contact and get a hit. We're starting to show a lot of improvements on offense."
In all, the Warhawks had five hits and did not strike out once, an impressive feat considering they struck out 12 times the last time they faced Richmond.
"I was very proud of the way were able to swing the bats," Olsen said.
Tim Lamoureux made the lead stick by pitching a two-hitter. In the seventh, he struck out the side to end the game.
"I felt a little off at the beginning of the game," Lamoureux said. "But I was able to settle down, especially after we went ahead. I have so much confidence in my defense that I felt very comfortable with a two-run lead."