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Baseball: Dunedin turns away Osceola 11-1

SEMINOLE — Osceola has done some impressive things this season. The Warriors won 19 of their first 21 games. They had not lost since March 1. And they had a 14-game win streak.

But if there was one thing Osceola lacked this year, it was a win against one of Pinellas County's upper-echelon programs.

The Warriors had the opportunity with a home game Friday against powerful Dunedin. It was a matchup of teams with the best records in the county and served as a potential preview of next week's Pinellas County Athletic Conference championship game.

But the Falcons showed they are still the team to beat, playing their most complete game of the season in an 11-1 victory that was called after six innings because of the 10-run rule.

"I think some of the kids were excited to play in this game," Dunedin coach Tom Hilbert said. "There is a lot of respect for Osceola from our side. We were able to get off to a fast start, which is something we haven't been able to do lately, and that helped."

The Warriors (19-3) threw their ace, Taylor Layner, who entered Friday's game undefeated. The Falcons (19-3) got to Layner early, with Mike Tipton and Chase Smith each hitting singles to start the first inning, and Alex Norris bringing both home on a single.

Down 2-0, Osceola rallied with a run in the bottom of the first on Scott Schlapinski's double that drove in Layner, who reached on a walk.

But the Warriors never got any closer.

Dunedin added to its lead with a three-run homer from Norris to make it 5-1.

"(Layner) threw inside on a pitch before that I was late on and fouled off," said Norris, who was 3-for-4 with six RBIs. "I thought it was a pretty good pitch, and myself being a pitcher figured he might go back to that spot. He did, and I was able to get around for my first home run this season."

Layner finished with 11 strikeouts and gave up eight hits before leaving in the fifth. Falcons starter Ben Emery allowed six hits, five of which were singles.

Schlapinski went 3-for-3 to lead Osceola.

"Dunedin is a great hitting ballclub," Warriors coach Kevin Mullins said. "They did this to us last year. It's tough, but we'll regroup."

Baseball: Dunedin turns away Osceola 11-1 04/17/10 [Last modified: Saturday, April 17, 2010 12:27am]

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