TAMPA - In playoff games, solid pitching, hitting and defense prevail - and the occasional eighth-grade pitcher.
Cambridge coach Sam Marsonek trusted the 5-foot-6 Reeves Martin to pitch Friday's Class A region semifinal against Sarasota Christian.
And he came through in a big way, throwing 6 1/3 innings and allowing two runs on eight hits before being relieved in the Lancers' 3-2 come-from-behind victory.
"It was hard work and I had a lot of pressure on me for an eighth-grader, but in my mind age was never a factor," Martin said.
In the fifth inning the Blazers struck first, plating two runs. In the bottom of the sixth inning, the Lancers (16-12) performed with a sense of urgency, knotting the score.
In the seventh, Brett Torrens walked and advanced to second on a wild pitch, then Levi Gilcrease, who was 4-for-5 with two stolen bases, singled home the winning run.
"What won the game for us was resiliency and gifts from the opposition," Marsonek said. "We are one step closer to our goal, but we still have a long way to go."