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Haines City Wins Close 9A Regional Against Oviedo

The Haines City Hornets hosted the Oviedo Lions Wednesday night in 9A regional quarterfinal action. The game turned into a pitching duel between the Hornets’ Edwin Serrano and the Lions’ Cooper Bradford with Serrano and the Hornets out-dueling the Lions en route to a 1-0 victory. The win knocks out the defending state-champion Lions, state champions in Class 7A a season ago.

The only run of the game for either team came in the bottom of the first. The Hornets (17-9) had one man on and two outs when Sam Koruschak sent a single down the third-base line to score Joel Hernandez for the 1-0 lead.

Edwin Serrano returned to the mound for the second inning and was lights-out for the Hornets. Serrano threw 72 pitches over six innings, allowing no runs on two hits and two walks, while striking out two.

Cooper Bradford started the game for the Lions (14-12) and he lasted six innings as well, throwing 88 pitches. Bradford allowed just the one run in the first on five hits and one walk. He struck out seven batters in the defeat.

Aside from a double from Drew Dawkins in the second, the Lions were unable to get any other runner into scoring position. They only mustered five base runners the rest of the game. Scott Reeves collected the other hit for the Lions.

Drake Kasperick came into the game in the seventh in relief of Serrano. Kasperick struck out the side in 13 pitches to pick up the save and preserve the victory for the Hornets, who advance to the regional semifinals against the Gateway Panthers.

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