Braddock pitches Williston past Trenton

Williston pitcher Ryan Braddock probably wishes he could play all of his games at Chiefland High School following Monday night’s 5-4 win over Trenton.

The senior picked up his second win of the season at Chiefland and came within two batters of pitching a complete game as the No. 5 seeded Red Devils (6-13-1) defeated the No. 4 seeded Tigers (10-14) in the 1A-District 7 baseball quarterfinals.

“I felt pretty comfortable,” Braddock said. “The last time I pitched on that mound [on March 7] was against the Chiefland Indians and I threw a complete game in 103 pitches [in a 6-4 win], so it was just an extra 105 or so pitches [tonight]. I was hoping I would get the last out. We went into that last inning with about four pitches to spare, hoping I would get the first batter out and get into the second batter. I did my job and my teammate, Hunter Bullock, just picked up right where I left off.”

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Williston pitcher Ryan Braddock
Williston pitcher Ryan Braddock notched six strikeouts and came within two batters of throwing a complete game in the Red Devils’ 5-4 win over Trenton on Monday. 

Florida pitchers at the high school level are only allowed 105 pitches per contest, so Braddock managed to get the first out in the bottom of the seventh inning before Bullock came in and held off Trenton—which advanced a runner to third base with two outs.

Braddock struck out six and allowed five hits and walked three Trenton batters. 

With the game tied 1-1 after the first inning, Trenton erupted for three runs in the bottom of the third inning. Then Williston rallied with four runs in the top of the fifth inning while holding the Tigers scoreless in the final four frames. 

“Trenton’s had our number this year,” Braddock said. “We’ve lost our last two games this season to them, but we came out and battled today. Down 1-4, I told the team when we huddled up that we’ve got three innings left so let’s go out there and compete and let’s go die trying. And we went out there and we competed and now we’re ready for the Newbery Panthers tomorrow.”

Williston's Nolan Benton scores on a Miles Beville double
Williston’s Nolan Benton (13) scores on a Miles Beville (5) two-run double in the top of the fifth inning against Trenton on Monday. 

Talin Sandquist, Nolan Benton and Miles Beville had two hits apiece for Williston with Beville and Trey Battle adding two RBIs each. 

“This is the third time we’ve met Trenton this year, they beat us the first two times,” Williston coach Bobby Kavanaugh said. “To be able to come back, being down, I’m super proud of the guys. They kept it together and fought back.”

Kavanaugh points to the team’s confidence that sparked the rally.

“This is the first time this year they really believed in themselves, showed they had no quit and wanted to win,” he said. “

Trenton coach Scott Hall talks things over with batters
Trenton coach Scott Hall talks things over with his batters during a Williston timeout in the fifth inning on Monday. 

Trenton’s Maddox Gilliam hit 3-for-4 and Colby Wilson collected two RBIs. Wilson gave up five runs on five hits and three walks while striking out three.

“When you get opportunities you’ve got to take advantage of them,” Trenton coach Scott Hall said. “We made a couple of baserunning mistakes and when you get outs on the bases, it always comes back to haunt you, even if it’s one or two, especially in a one-run game.”

Looking back on the season, Hall is optimistic about next year.

“We only had one senior and in that game right there we started four seventh graders,” he said “You can say we’re really young, but then next year we also have seven juniors. So you can say we’re young and not young, so you can say when you start four seventh graders but you also have seven juniors.

“But those juniors have an opportunity to get better next year and if they do, then bring those young kids with them, those young kids can play. So we’ll have a chance to be pretty good next year.”

In the second 1A-District 7 quarterfinal game at Chiefland High School, No. 3 seed Dixie County (Cross City) beat No. 6 seed Bell, 6-2.

On Tuesday, Williston will face No. 1 seed and defending 1A state champion Newberry at 4 p.m. followed by Dixie County playing No. 2 seed Chiefland at 7 p.m.

Dixie County's Kade McCaskill stole two bases
Dixie County’s Kade McCaskill (left) stole two bases in the Bears’ 6-2 win over Bell in the 1A District-7 quarterfinals on Monday. 

Baseball results – Monday, May 2 

Class 5A-District 3 (at Various Cities)

No. 5 Ridgeview (Orange Park) 6, No. 4 Gainesville 1

Class 4A-District 4 (at Various Cities)

No. 4 Palatka 5, No. 5 Eastside (Gainesville) 0 

Class 3A-District 2 (at Bishop Snyder in Jacksonville)

No. 5 West Nassau (Callahan) 3, No. 4 P.K. Yonge (Gainesville) 1

Class 2A-District 4 (Semifinals/Championship at Oak Hall School)

 No. 4 Peniel Baptist Academy (Palatka) 7, No. 5 Countryside Christian (Gainesville) 4

Class 1A-District 7 (at Chiefland High School)

No. 5 Williston 5, No. 4 Trenton 4 

No. 3 Dixie County (Cross City) 6, No. 6 Bell 2

Class 1A-District 8 (at Fort White High School)

No. 2 Union County (Lake Butler) 11, No. 7 Bradford (Starke) 0

No. 3 Fort White vs. No. 6 Branford, 7 p.m. – postponed to Tuesday

Softball results – Monday, May 2 

Class 6A-District 2

No. 2 Fleming Island (Orange Park) 9, No. 3 Buchholz (Gainesville) 3

Class 5A-District 3 (at Various Cities)

No. 5 Orange Park at No. 4 Columbia (Lake City), 5:30 p.m. – Postponed to Tuesday

Class 3A-District 3 (at Various Cities)

No. 4 Interlachen 21, No. 5 P.K Yonge (Gainesville) 6

Class 2A-District 4 (at Various Cities)

No. 4 Countryside Christian (Gainesville) 26, No. 5 First Baptist Christian Academy (Bunnell) 11

Class 1A-District 5 (at Hilliard)

No. 4 Bradford (Starke) 11, No. 5 Hamilton County (Jasper) 1

Class 1A-District 7 (at Various Cities)

No. 4 Chiefland 4, No. 5 Newberry 3

Class 1A-District 8 (at Various Cities)

No. 4 Hawthorne 16, No. 5 Wildwood 1

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