Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Saladino quarterfinals: Gaither, Armwood on to semis

BRANDON — Frank Permuy thinks he might have the answer to surviving the grind of the Saladino Tournament.

Gaither's veteran coach said he would consider using one pitcher per inning for the remainder of the tournament to avoid putting high mileage on the arms of his pitchers.

The Cowboys used just two pitchers Wednesday in a 9-3 win against Wharton to advance to today's semifinal round.

Permuy handed the ball to junior Michael DeFranco, a 6-foot-1, 181-pound right-hander, who entered the game having pitched one inning this season.

"I was very nervous," DeFranco said. "When the coach put the ball in my glove I didn't know what to say. … If anything, (I thought) I had a one-in-a-million chance of getting one inning."

DeFranco did exactly what Permuy had hoped for after digging himself out of a hole in the top of the first. Runners had advanced to second and third with no outs before DeFranco managed to get the next three outs. He went 52/3 innings allowing nine hits, three runs, two walks and three strikeouts for his first victory.

The Cowboys scored nine runs over the final four innings to knock the Wildcats out of the tournament. Gaither sophomore Zach Jackson went 3-for-3 with a double, a run scored and an RBI.

Gaither (15-4) took an 8-0 lead before Wharton (10-8) scored three in the sixth.

"You have to have special guys to win this tournament," Permuy said. "By the time you get to the final round everyone has used up all their good guys, unless you sailed through it. … By the time you get to the semifinal you better figure out what your game plan is going to be. It's tough from then on."

Armwood 8, Plant City 5: As Armwood's players jogged half-heartedly to the dugout after the top of the first inning, they were met by coach Michael Wrenn at the third-base line. He didn't rip into them for the six Plant City batters who came to the plate or the two-run hole.

Instead, Wrenn filled their ears with a fiery pep talk and helped ignite a win that sent the Hawks into today's semifinals.

Senior Billy Farrell heard the right combination of words and led Armwood (17-4) with his bat, going 3-for-4 from the leadoff spot with three runs scored and a pair of RBIs. The Hawks took the lead for good in the second inning when Farrell scored on a sacrifice fly for a 4-3 lead.

"We're trying to set the pace with him," Wrenn said. "He's starting to progress as a leadoff. It's good to see a senior do what he's supposed to do."

Hawks sophomore Josh Spano and freshman Jordan Fameree each scored twice.

Pitcher Robert Benincasa earned the win going six innings with seven strikeouts and five hits.

Plant City (8-12) struggled with five errors. K'Shawn Smith's 2-for-3 performance with two runs scored, and a two-run home run in the fifth by Micah Carmony helped bring the Raiders within one. But Armwood scored twice in the fifth.

"The first inning could have been bad," Farrell said. "But we came and fought back like we're supposed to."

fast facts

Today's semifinals

At Brandon: Armwood vs. Gaither, 4 p.m.; Alonso vs. Plant, 7 p.m.

Saladino quarterfinals: Gaither, Armwood on to semis 04/08/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, April 8, 2009 11:26pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. USF tight end Palmore faces charge of credit card fraud

    Crime

    A University of South Florida football player faces charges of fraudulent use of a credit card and petit theft following his arrest by Temple Terrace police on Monday.

    USF senior tight end Adrian Palmore faces charges of fraudulent use of a credit card and petit theft after his arrest by Temple Terrace police on June 19, 2017. [Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office]
  2. Rowdies defender gets the call to represent Jamaica

    Soccer

    ST. PETERSBURG —- Damion Lowe has loved his first season with the Rowdies but has some other soccer-related business that might pull him away for a bit.

    Family business, too.

    Tampa Bay Rowdies defender Damion Lowe collides with Louisville City FC forward Luke Spencer earlier this year.
  3. Sarasota's Scooter Gennett: Utility man turned historic slugger

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — On June 10, 2009, the Brewers selected a Sarasota High School shortstop in the 16th round of the MLB draft. He'd assembled an impressive resume in prep ball, but as one of more than 1,500 players drafted that year, he had a tough road to the big leagues.

    Cincinnati Reds second baseman Scooter Gennett (4) of Sarasota makes the throw to first as Rays DH Trevor Plouffe (14) grounds into a double play at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg Monday, June 19, 2017. For Gennett, the three-game series this week with the Rays was his first trip back to Tampa Bay since his historic four-home run game June 6, 2017 against St. Louis. DIRK SHADD   |   Times  

  4. Vegas Golden Knights expansion selections

    Lightning Strikes

    Vegas Golden Knights expansion selections

    Goaltenders

    Calvin Pickard, Colorado Avalanche

    J.F. Berube, New York Islanders

    Marc-Andre Fleury, Pittsburgh Penguins

    Forwards

    Teemu Pulkkinen, Arizona Coyotes

    William Carrier, Buffalo Sabres

    Cody Eakin, Dallas Stars …

  5. Lightning's Victor Hedman third in Norris Trophy voting

    Lightning Strikes

    Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman knew he was a long shot to win the Norris Trophy, given to the league's top defenseman, at Wednesday's NHL awards show.

    LAS VEGAS, NV - JUNE 21:  Victor Hedman of the Tampa Bay Lightning attends the 2017 NHL Awards at T-Mobile Arena on June 21, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images) 700065353