Palma Ceia/Tampa Bay/Interbay, Florida's representative in the Little League Softball Southern Regional Tournament at Arnold S. White Stadium, fell 5-1 in its final game against Georgia.
Offensively, PC/TB/IB outhit opponents 32-22, with Alexis Jackson leading the team with five hits in the team's four games. Jackson scored two runs and had one RBI in the tournament. Ashley Cozart hit .500 in the tournament, Sabrina Cuizio drove in three runs and Caroline Bado scored three runs.
From the mound, Sarah Miller had 11 strikeouts and Caroline Ellis had 10 in two outings each.
In the semifinal games Monday, Tennessee defeated Virginia and South Carolina beat West Virginia.
Tennessee and South Carolina will meet for the Southern Region Title at 6 tonight in Gulfport.
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10-11 BASEBALL: Citrus Park dominated in the state tournament en route to the championship. With Monday's 14-0 final win against Cocoa, Citrus Park put up a run difference of 62-9 in the five games it played in the tournament.
In the championship, Citrus Park used 18 hits in the four-inning game. Winning pitcher Kevin Merrill allowed only four hits.
Merrill was backed up by his team's defense, especially in the second inning with Cocoa threatening with the bases loaded and one out. Cocoa had a flyball out to Daniel Martin in rightfield, and Martin threw home to catcher Michael McGuire, who was able to get the final out of the inning in a rundown of the advancing player to squash a would-be rally.
Merrill was also key at the plate, going 3-for-4 with three RBIs. Levi Gilcrease had three hits for Citrus Park. McGuire, Brennan Garcia and Austin McCullers added to the offense with two hits each.
JUNIOR SOFTBALL: Palma Ceia/Tampa Bay/Interbay fell short in the state championship final, losing to Indian River (Vero Beach/Sebastian) 4-3.
Indian River pitcher Molly Whittington had a two-run home run to give her team a 2-0 lead early, but PC/TB/IB's Tyler Riendeau answered with a solo home run. With the score tied 3-3 in the seventh, Indian River scored the winning run to end PC/TB/IB's season.
Softball Southern Regional
Where: Arnold S. White Stadium, 658 58th St. S., Gulfport
West Virginia 2-2
North Carolina 2-2
Palma Ceia/Tampa Bay/Interbay 0-4
South Carolina 4-0
Today: Championship, Tennessee vs. South Carolina, 6 p.m.