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Tampa Tarpons win spot in AAU semis

The Tampa Tarpons won twice Thursday to advance to the semifinals of the AAU 11-and-under national tournament at Lake Buena Vista.

In the wild-card game, Ryan McCurdy threw a complete game to lead Tampa to a 5-1 win over Hawaii.

Then in the quarterfinals, the Orange County (Calif.) Storm took a 3-1 lead in the fourth, but the Tarpons rallied for a 9-4 victory.

Matt Quevedo entered the game in the fourth inning to relieve starting pitcher Jonathon Phin and held the Storm while the Tampa offense took over.

Chris Duffy homered in each game, giving him three in two days.

"They all did so good. It's just been a real team effort getting to the point we're at now," Tarpons coach Ken Wittcoff said.

"I like our position. We've got a good amount of pitching, and we're hitting the ball now."

The Tarpons face the Jacksonville Vipers at 8 a.m. today. The winner plays the Placentia (Calif.)-Georgia Stars winner for the championship at 11 a.m.

The Tarpons will finish no worse than fourth in the 42-team tournament.