DADE CITY — Hitless for the night going into her fifth at-bat in the ninth inning, Pasco's Megan Newsome talked to Colena Lazar and let her confidence take care of the rest, singling in Emily Pennington for the winning run. Pasco defeated Groveland South Lake 5-4 in the Class 4A region quarterfinals.
"I just needed it all night and I mean you guys (saw) how I was hitting," Newsome said. "Finally (Colena Lazar) had a talk with me and got my head in the game and I just stroked it like I usually do."
The Pirates (21-6) ran into trouble in the early going, as South Lake (15-7) scored three runs off Lazar (15 strikeouts) in the top of the third inning. Pasco cut into the lead in the bottom of the inning on a Colesa Lazar single that scored Latoya Lewis from second base.
Pasco continued to cut into the lead in the next inning on a Renea Reynolds' single off Hayley Padgett (three strikeouts), which scored Tori Norris from second base to make it 4-3. But Lazar came through in the sixth, sending the 1-0 offering over the centerfield fence to tie.
"I was pretty down in the first inning because of my pitching and my defense was not doing as well," Lazar said. "Everybody felt like (South Lake) had it, but it is not over until it is over."
HCA moves on easily
Hernando Christian seventh-grader Courtney Riddle tossed a one-hitter and watcher her offense deliver a 16-hitter as the Lions (20-5) trounced Palatka's Peniel Baptist 9-0 in Tuesday's Class A region quarterfinals.
Heidi Riley and Jackie Butler had three hits each to lead the Lions' onslaught. Butler finished a home run shy of the cycle; Riley had two doubles.
Riddle, meantime, didn't allow a Peniel runner to reach third base. She walked five and struck out five.
Nature Coast ousted
At Harmony, pinch-hitter Amber Hutchinson's two-out single in the bottom of the seventh lifted the hosts 1-0 to a dramatic victory over Nature Coast (16-12). Harmony had runners at first and second when Hutchinson hit her winner, a sharp liner between third and short. The hit spoiled an otherwise sparkling four-hitter by Nature Coast workhorse Ashley Antczak.
"We were in, too," Sharks coach Mettina Couet said. "But it was just a screamer that found a little hole."
Joey Knight, Times staff writer