It’s been a number of years since the Avon Park, Lake Placid and Sebring High School baseball teams all qualified for the state playoffs in the same season.
That is what has transpired on the diamond this year as Avon Park and Lake Placid are playing in Class 5A regional quarterfinals tonight, while Sebring is competing in a Class 6A quarterfinal tonight.
Avon Park, which made it to the Class 5A State Final Four last year, has had a great season by going 23-4 overall and won the Class 5A-District 10 championship for the second consecutive year.
Avon Park will host Melbourne Central Catholic (20-6) in a Class 5A-Region 3 quarterfinal at 7 tonight at Charles R. Head Field. The Red Devils beat the Hustlers in the playoffs last year.
“Melbourne Central Catholic is a solid team and has some good pitchers,” said Avon Park head coach Whit Cornell. “The boys have worked hard to get here and we’re looking forward to being at home in front of our fans for the first round of the playoffs.”
Lake Placid is 10-11 overall, but the Green Dragons are playing their best ball of the season at the right time.
Lake Placid knocked off Lemon Bay by a score of 5-3 in eight innings in Saturday’s Class 5A-District 12 championship game.
The Green Dragons host Booker (Sarasota) in a Class 5A-Region 3 quarterfinal game at 7 tonight. The Tornadoes are 12-13 coming into tonight’s playoff game.
“Booker has a good team,” said Lake Placid head coach Harry Tewksbury. “They have a real good pitcher and can swing the bats pretty well. We’re playing with a lot of confidence right now and we’ve had excellent practices this week. We’re excited to be playing at home in front of our fans and we’re looking forward to playing a good game.”
Class 6A Sebring is 11-14 overall and the Blue Streaks lost to Lake Wales by a score of 2-1 in eight innings in last week’s Class 6A-District 10 championship game.
Sebring is on the road tonight for a regional quarterfinal at District 9 champion Dunedin. The Falcons are 19-8 on the season.
“Dunedin is a senior-laden team,” said Blue Streak head coach Jasone DeWitt. “They pitch well and like to run when they get on the bases. They are a good team but we played a tough schedule that has prepared us for this kind of competition. We match up pretty well with Dunedin and if we throw strikes and don’t give them extra outs I think we’ll do fine.”
If Avon Park, Lake Placid or Sebring win tonight they would advance to play in a regional semifinal on Saturday night.