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Dunedin Spring Classic

Falcons pound way into semis while Green Devils rally

DUNEDIN — The offense was relentless and merciless Tuesday, but that has been the case a lot lately.

Dunedin is scoring runs in bunches and is getting contributions from everyone. Add pitching that has been effective, if not spectacular, and you have a 14-game win streak from a team that no longer resembles the bunch that started 1-2.

The rampaging Falcons overwhelmed Tates Creek (Ky.), pounding out 15 hits in an 18-8 victory that was called after five innings because of the 10-run mercy rule.

Dunedin had five triples, all from different players. Jake Rogers also hit a two-run homer.

The 18 runs were the second-most this season by the Falcons, who are averaging 12.1 the past three weeks.

"We take a lot of pride in our offense, and the bats are starting to come around," Dunedin coach Tom Hilbert said.

The Falcons (15-2) will play Countryside (5-13) in the semifinals of the Dunedin Spring Classic today at 5 p.m.

The game is a rematch of last year, when the Cougars knocked off the host Falcons in the opening round.

Countryside stayed hot this year with a 7-4 victory over Tarpon Springs. The Cougars were ahead 7-1, then held as the Spongers scored three in the seventh.

In the other winner's bracket game, St. Petersburg rallied to beat East Lake 5-3.

Down 3-1, the Green Devils took the lead for good when Gordon McLean hit a three-run home run in the sixth inning.

"We're in a tough district and we face a lot of quality pitching," St. Petersburg coach Stefan Futch said. "It helps to have already faced that in a tournament like this."

The Green Devils (10-8) will play Clearwater Central Catholic in the semifinals tonight at 8.

The Green Devils have beaten the Marauders in the tournament the past two seasons.

In loser's bracket play, Canterbury scored five runs in the seventh to beat River Ridge 6-3 and Palm Harbor University beat Lakeland Christian 6-5.

Bob Putnam can be reached at putnam@sptimes.com or (727) 445-4169.

>>fast facts

Today's games

Pinellas Park-

River Ridge, 5 p.m.

Canterbury-

Florida Christian, 5 p.m.

Dunedin vs.

Countryside, 5 p.m.

Tates Creek (Ky.)-

Tarpon Springs, 8 p.m.

St. Petersburg-

CC Catholic, 8 p.m.

East Lake-

Northeast, 8 p.m.

Falcons pound way into semis while Green Devils rally 04/01/08 [Last modified: Friday, April 4, 2008 6:04am]
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