1. Palm Harbor University (23-2)
This week: Tuesday-Thursday (Class 9A, District 8 tournament)
In one quick motion, Palm Harbor University ace Savanna Bennett extends her arms. Her right one whips around like a windmill as the ball whistles out of her hand. Her left extends enough in her delivery to show a tattoo written in cursive:
"With pain comes strength."
GULFPORT — Two years ago, Boca Ciega made one of the most improbable runs in softball. The Pirates, 4-11 entering the district tournament, won five straight to make the state semifinals for the first time.
1. Palm Harbor University (21-2)
This week: Thursday vs. Clearwater; Friday vs. Boca Ciega (PCAC title game)
Marina Rao Mitchell
Rao was inserted into Mitchell's starting lineup in the season opener. The move did not come as a surprise to the freshman.
1. Academy at the Lakes (14-0)
This week: Monday vs. Springstead; Tuesday vs. Canterbury; Thursday vs. Seven Rivers Christian (doubleheader).
WESLEY CHAPEL — The history of Wesley Chapel High softball is, to put it kindly, a bit unsightly from a record standpoint.
TAMPA — Chamberlain High softball coach Bobby Diez yells just like he always has and he doesn't plan to stop any time soon.
"I'm Latin," he said, "I'm loud."
Mariah Melendez, Sunlake
The mound is where Melendez feels most comfortable on the softball field.
1. Academy at the Lakes (12-0)
This week: Tuesday at Keswick Christian; Thursday vs. Citrus Park Christian