Make us your home page

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

(View our Privacy Policy)

5A-9 softball: Gaither's hot streak continues straight to the title

TAMPA — For the second straight night, Gaither defeated a district rival it had lost to twice during the regular season. Now the Cowboys are Class 5A, District 9 champions.

Gaither held host Sickles (22-5) scoreless in a 4-0 win Friday night. The Cowboys earned the title shot with a 3-2 upset of Chamberlain in the semifinals.

"I told the girls, 'When it comes to the end of April, you've got to be playing your best ball to advance,' " Gaither coach Al Alcala said.

It did not take long for the fourth-seeded Cowboys (18-9) to get on the scoreboard. Shelby Heiser doubled in the top of the first inning and raced home on a two-out single by Morgan Litchfield.

For a while, it looked like that might be the only run as Gaither ace Kristen McGrath and Sickles' Chelsea Oglevie settled into their grooves. McGrath finished with a two-hitter while Oglevie scattered six hits with eight strikeouts.

Sickles (22-5) nearly tied it in the fourth when Ashli Goff slid home on a fielder's choice by Danielle Rowe, but the home plate umpire ruled that she missed the plate. Goff was tagged out after catcher Loni Campbell retrieved an errant throw home.

"Our plan was to keep the Goff twins off the bases and, for the most part, we did," Alcala said.

Ashli Goff went 1-for-2 with a walk and Courtney Goff was 0-for-3. Gaither added two runs in the sixth on Megan McGrath's run-scoring double and Morgan Litchfield's sacrifice fly. Kristen McGrath, who led off that inning with a single, and Heiser, who reached on a fielder's choice, scored.

Megan McGrath added a sacrifice fly in the seventh.

. Up next

Region quarterfinals

Games Tuesday at 7

6A: Sarasota at Plant

6A: Brandon at PHU, 4

5A: Plant City at Forest

5A: Springstead at East Bay

5A: Sickles at Venice

5A: Manatee at Gaither

4A: Jefferson at Lakewood Ranch

4A: Braden River at


3A: Mulberry at Tampa Catholic, 4

A: Seffner at All Saints'

5A-9 softball: Gaither's hot streak continues straight to the title 04/23/10 [Last modified: Friday, April 23, 2010 11:10pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rowdies anxious to get back on track


    ST. PETERSBURG — Having already played four matches in less than two weeks' time, the Rowdies have to turn around again on short rest to host Saint Louis FC today.

    And they're actually glad about it.

  2. Rays pitchers rave about Twins pitching coach, ex-mentor Neil Allen

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — There have been a lot of coaches who have had a hand in helping Chris Archer get to the big leagues and to the front of the Rays rotation, and as he took the mound Friday night at Target Field, he had reason to nod appreciatively toward the home dugout.

    Minnesota Twins pitching coach Neil Allen jogs back to the dugout after paying starting pitcher Tyler Duffey a visit on the mound in the first inning of a baseball game against the Texas Rangers on Thursday, July 7, 2016, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
  3. State baseball: Bishop McLaughlin bows out in Class 3A semifinals


    FORT MYERS — One inning into Bishop McLaughlin's Class 3A state semifinal against Fort Myers Canterbury, things could not have gone much better for the Hurricanes. They grabbed a quick one-run lead and Canterbury ace Sam Keating was forced out of the game with a nagging neck injury.

     Chris Berglund (18) of Bishop McLaughlin, at bat during second inning of the FHSAA class 3A semi-final on Friday May 26, 2017 at Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers, Fla. Canterbury, Fort Myers, defeated Bishop 7 to 4. Canterbury will play in the 3A championship tomorrow.
  4. Bucs WR DeSean Jackson knows only one direction: full speed ahead


    TAMPA — DeSean Jackson is the "1."

    Actually, Jackson, the Bucs' latest weapon for quarterback Jameis Winston, with his blazing speed and game-changing splash plays, wears No. 11 in games.

    DeSean Jackson, a needed game-breaker for Bucs who signed a $33.5 million deal, welcomes big expectations.
  5. Video preview: Rays open tough road trip facing Twins tonight


    After splitting a four-game series against the Angels to wrap up a winning homestand, the Rays tonight open a nine-game, 10-day roadtrip with the first game of the weekend series with the Twins: