Lady Indians lose in semifinals

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By Claude Lewis

FORT WHITE - P.K. Yonge is the new Class 3A District 5 softball champion.

To claim the first-place trophy, the Lady Wave first had to dethrone defending champ Chiefland in the semifinals before defeating host school Fort White in the final.

Chiefland advanced to the April 16 semifinal by defeating Dixie County in the quarters.

Chiefland had lost twice to P.K. during the regular season, but both games were nailbiters.

The third meeting would also be a close game. In fact, it was tight until P.K. scored three times in the bottom of the sixth. The 4-0 victory paved the way to the final for the semi-private Gainesville school.

Chiefland's final record for 2008 is 8-10.

Chiefland pitcher Brittany Davis put the Wave down in order through the first three innings.

Meanwhile, the Lady Indians threatened in the second when Brooke Williams and Katelynn Allen singled. Winning pitcher Brittany Posey worked out of the jam by getting the next two batters.

Young P.K. Yonge, which features a number of girls still in middle school, punched across a run in the fourth inning. A throwing error opened the door. Then there was a walk and wild pitch to set the table. Posey singled to plate the run. It could have been a lot worse, but a great defensive play by third baseman Cassie Labat got the Lady Indians out of further trouble. She snared a line drive and stepped on the bag to suddenly end the threat.

Chiefland had a runner reach second in the fifth, as Hagan Lewis reached via error and pinch-runner Jenkins went to second on a wild pitch. Posey fanned the next two batters, however.

There was another Indian uprising in the top of the sixth, as Williams singkd and went to second when the ball was booted around by the right fielder. Posey got the final out of the frame via the K.

Chiefland almost got out of the bottom of the sixth unscathed, as Davis got two outs and another batter appeared out at first but was ruled safe by the umpire. A double by Posey plated one. A triple by Taylor Asbell made it 3-0. A wild pitch allowed the final run to score.

Chiefland went 1-2-3 in the seventh and the upset bid was turned back.

The next night, April 17, P.K. won the final, 1-0, over Fort White.

P.K. takes an 18-5 record into the regional tournament.

Fort White made it to the final by surprising Williston, 3-2, April 16.