Softball | Coral Reef 1, Timber Creek 0

Coral Reef seals state softball semifinal

 

Coral Reef managed a 1-0 victory over Timber Creek in the Class 8A state semifinal, placing it one win away from a state title.

a1fernandez@MiamiHerald.com

Miami Coral Reef senior pitcher Dayna Wilson kept telling herself — throw one more pitch and get one more out.

Wilson figured if she could hang on long enough something good would happen.

In extra innings Friday night, it finally did for the Barracudas.

After Wilson kept Timber Creek off the scoreboard for nine innings, a triple by sophomore Carsyn Gordon set up sophomore Cristina Colli’s walk-off single that lifted Coral Reef’s softball team to a 1-0 victory against Orlando Timber Creek at the Vero Beach Sports Village.

The Barracudas (27-2) are within one victory of claiming their first state championship and will get the chance to win it Saturday night at 7 p.m. when they face Weston Cypress Bay in an all-South Florida final.

Coral Reef won its 12th consecutive game and can become Miami-Dade County’s first public school state champion in softball since Miami Palmetto in 2008.

“As long as we were holding, nothing else mattered,” Wilson said. “I knew I just needed to stay calm and keep pitching. Eventually, I knew we were going to make something happen.”

Wilson (19-2), not an overpowering pitcher this season, did not have a strikeout in the game. What she did have was effective location that induced several pop-ups and ground balls that were handled by the defense behind her. Wilson gave up seven hits, but all were singles.

Wilson outdueled Stephanie Adkins, who kept Coral Reef’s potent lineup, which scored 37 runs in four previous playoff games, mostly quiet.

Even a lightning delay that halted the game in the fifth inning for nearly an hour couldn’t snap the Barracudas out of their scoring drought.

“When I swung, I just put my head down and ran because I thought if it drops, I have a shot at an inside-the-park home run,” Gordon said. “I peeked when I was getting to second base and saw it had dropped and I knew then I had at least third.”

Gordon began to settle the issue when she put a good swing on a rising ball from Adkins that soared deep to left and bounced off the glove of Timber Creek’s left fielder as she made a leaping attempt.

Colli calmly stepped up to the plate and delivered the game-winner by hitting a bouncer up the middle past Adkins.

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WP: Dayna Wilson (19-2). LP: Stephanie Adkins (21-6).

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