Friday, Jul 25, 2014
Central High School

Central claims Farm Bureau crown


Published:   |   Updated: March 22, 2014 at 01:25 AM

BROOKSVILLE - After four days and 23 games across four sites, the inaugural Pasco-Hernando Farm Bureau Insurance Baseball Classic drew to a close Friday night at Central.

However, the Bears and visiting Pasco wouldn't let it finish quite so easily.

A championship game that lasted just short of four hours and went 12 innings concluded when Central's Thomas Sorrentino pulled a groundball into right field for a walk-off 5-4 victory.

"I was just trying to hit the ball hard somewhere and luckily it went through the hole," Sorrentino said. "Long week, but it paid off."

The Bears (12-5 overall, 4-0 in tournament) were playing their fourth game in as many nights, while the Pirates (7-4 overall, 3-1 in tournament) were on their fourth in three days.

Even with both team's pitching staffs stretched thin, neither offense overly capitalized.

The Bears went ahead 1-0 in the bottom of the third, after Justin Chevalier hit a leadoff double, went to third on a C.J. Martinez single and scored on Matt Clark's sacrifice fly to center.

Central had the bases loaded with two outs in the fourth when the lefty Martinez went the other way, lining a double down the line in left to plate a pair.

The damage could have been worse, however the Bears had a runner caught off third in the second, stranded another on third in the third, two in scoring position in the fourth, and failed to score with the bases loaded and no one out in the fifth.

The Pirates pulled within one in the sixth without a hit, as the first two batters reached on a wild pitch on a third strike followed by an error. Consecutive groundouts by Johnathan Coats and Sam Newlon brought home a pair.

Those missed opportunities proved costly for Central when Malik Johns tripled to deep center with one away in the top of the seventh, and scampered home with the tying run when a pitch in the dirt bounced away from the catcher.

In the bottom of the 11th the Bears again left a man on third, and in the 12th Pasco finally broke the deadlock.

Tyree Austin walked with one out and broke to second on a hit-and-run attempt. Phillip Wilson grounded a ball through the hole just vacated by the shortstop, and Austin raced all the way around to score.

After Wilson advanced to third on errant pickoff, Matt Warner struck out the next two batters to keep the deficit at one.

It was Warner who then sparked the final rally, singling to start the bottom of the frame. Zach Sorrentino sacrificed courtesy runner Dante Hamilton to second.

Hank Shiver worked a walk, and after Hamilton advanced to third on a flyout to right, Martinez received an intentional pass to load the bases.

That brought up Clark, who ended up grounding a ball to the right of third that trickled past the shortstop into left.

"I wasn't quite ready because they intentionally walked the one hitter," Clark said. "But after that I got into the box, saw a couple pitches, and I just told myself I had to put the ball in play, and it kind of worked out. Got it in the hole, and then luckily we had a good hitter behind me to drive in another run."

That was the lefty Sorrentino, who completed the comeback that gave the Bears the first-place trophy.

"It was a great game; the old line, it's a shame somebody had to lose that game," Central head coach Al Sorrentino said. "But obviously if you're going to play that long and that hard and battle, you want to come out on top. We did, somehow."

cbernhardt@hernandotoday.com

(352) 544-5288

Central 5, Pasco 4 (12 inn.)

123 456 789 10 11 12 R H E

PAS 000 002 100 0 0 1 - 4 7 2

CEN 001 200 000 0 0 2 - 5 9 2

PAS - Cross, Phillips (4), Dawson (10) and Imhoff.

CEN - Harbuck, Dwyer (3), Martinez (7), Clark (7), Warner (10) and Shiver.

W - Warner (1-0). L - Dawson (0-1).

2B - Hanlon, Johns (PAS); Chevalier, Martinez (CEN).

3B - Johns (PAS).

HR - none.

Records - Pasco (7-4, 3-1 in tournament), Central (12-5, 4-0 in tournament).

Pasco-Hernando Farm Bureau Insurance Baseball Classic

03-18:

at Hernando

Hernando 7, Fivay 0

Land O' Lakes 5, Nature Coast Technical 0

at Sunlake

Sunlake 6, Wesley Chapel 5

at Central

Central 6, Gulf 0

Bishop McLaughlin 3, Mitchell 2

at Weeki Wachee

Wiregrass Ranch 14, Weeki Wachee 1

Springstead 12, Zephyrhills 1

03-19:

at Hernando

Nature Coast Technical 7, Fivay 2

Hernando 3, Land O' Lakes 0

at Sunlake

Pasco 11, Ridgewood 0

Pasco 5, Sunlake 4

at Central

Mitchell 12, Gulf 0

Central 6, Bishop McLaughlin 2

at Weeki Wachee

Weeki Wachee 8, Zephyrhills 6

Springstead 3,Wiregrass Ranch 2

03-20:

at Hernando

Wesley Chapel 3, Nature Coast 1

Wesley Chapel 2, Fivay 1

at Weeki Wachee

Mitchell 11, Weeki Wachee 0

at Central

Wiregrass Ranch 8, Bishop McLaughlin 4

Central 4, Springstead 0

at Sunlake

Land O' Lakes 6, Sunlake 4

Pasco 2, Hernando 1

03-21:

at Central

(Championship)

Central 5, Pasco 4 (12 inn.)

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