Dixie County, Trenton advance in district semis

For most of Tuesday’s Class 1A-District 7 softball semifinal between Chiefland and Dixie County, the game was up for grabs in Cross City.

Chiefland softball coach Jimmy Anderson
Chiefland softball coach Jimmy Anderson

The No. 4 seed Indians, who lost at home to top seed Dixie County, 16-2, on April 22, were tied at 2-2 heading into the bottom of the fifth inning.

However, the Bears (18-4) eventually put the game away with a 6-run sixth inning in a 10-3 win against the Indians (7-17), who played their final game under head coach Jimmy Anderson.

Get The Latest News

Don't miss our top stories every weekday in your inbox.

“They came out and they played us, but they always do,” said Dixie County coach Greg Wimberley. “Every time we play them, they come out and they play us hard every game, so any time you get two rivals together, it doesn’t matter what the records are, you can throw it out, there’s going to be two teams on the field that’s going to battle and they gave us everything we wanted tonight.”

Dixie County, which is ranked No. 1 in Class 1A by MaxPreps, scored what would prove to be the winning run in the bottom of the fifth.

Catcher Payton Hatcher reached on an error to start the inning.

Bria Hinkle, who started the game at shortstop but finished in the circle, walked.

With two outs, freshman Charleigh Philmon singled to center field to drive in two runs for a 4-2 lead. Philmon added an RBI double in the sixth.

“First year in high school and first year on varsity,” Wimberley stated. “She’s a clutch hitter. You’ve got a ninth grader that’s your designated player so that speaks volumes about her.”

Chiefland’s Rayna Merz at bat vs. Dixie County pitcher Madisyn Langford and catcher Peyton Hatcher
Chiefland’s Rayna Merz at bat with Dixie County pitcher Madisyn Langford throwing to catcher Peyton Hatcher as the Bears defeated the Indians, 10-3, on Tuesday. 

The Indians got an RBI single from catcher Tori Fisher in the top of the sixth to bring them within one at 4-3, with the tying run at third and the go-ahead run at first.

However, Hinkle came in and struck out the final two batters to end the threat.

“We challenged the kids,” said Williams, who said it was “bitter-sweet” to step away from coaching after 33 years. “We’ve been up and down all season and we found ways to lose all year. Dixie County is a great team, a super team. I told them after the game they’ll probably be going to be in the final four.”

Madisyn Langford pitched 5.1 innings and allowed four hits and just one earned run. She struck out six Chiefland batters and didn’t walk anyone.

“She did great,” Wimberley said. “We had a few errors behind her that added a couple of runs on the board, but she came in and did her job. She did awesome. I was very proud of her.”

Hatcher’s three-run single to the gap in left center field in the sixth inning helped put the game on ice for Dixie County, which will play defending 1A state champion Trenton in Thursday’s district championship game.

In the first semifinal, the No. 2 seed Tigers pulled away from No. 3 seed Bronson (12-7) in the fourth inning on their way to a 10-0 win in five innings.

Bronson softball dugout
Bronson fell to Trenton on Tuesday in the 1A-District 7 semifinals. 

Trenton’s Emma Brideson set the tone early with four strikeouts in the first two innings. The freshman pitched a complete game and allowed only four hits.

“She did a good job, left the ball up a little bit a couple of times and they hit the ball but other than that she kept the ball down and gave us a chance to make outs,” said Trenton’s first-year head coach Clint Anderson.

Meanwhile, the offense struck quickly.

In the bottom of the first inning, Shaylyn Parrish and Brandy Dees had consecutive singles. Parrish scored on a throwing error by the catcher and Dees scored on Hailey Blankenship’s 2-run single for an early 3-0 lead.

Trenton (10-10), which only has two seniors, is back in the district championship game.

“I’m glad we’re back again,” Anderson said. “Young team. We’ve grown up a little bit, but we’ve got more to do.”

Trenton softball dugout at district
Trenton defeated Bronson, 10-0, in the 1A-District 7 semifinal round on Tuesday. 

Last year, Dixie County only lost three games. All three losses were to Trenton, who they will host on Thursday night for the 1A-7 title.

“The last four or five years, it’s been Dixie and Trenton,” Wimberley said. “It’s the same story. It’s not changing. We’ve got a chance to do what we’ve had an opportunity to do for the last few years so now we’re just going to have to strap it up and come out and see.”

SOFTBALL – District tournaments

Class 6A-District 2 (at Various Cities)

Monday, May 2

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

Class 5A-District 3 (at Various Cities)

Monday, May 2

No. 3 Ponte Vedra 16, No. 6 Englewood 0

No. 2 Middleburg 15, No. 7 Riverside (Jacksonville) 0

Tuesday, May 3

No. 5 Orange Park 6, No. 4 Columbia (Lake City) 5

No. 5 Orange Park at No. 1 Ridgeview (Orange Park), 7:30 p.m.

No. 2 Middleburg vs. No. 3 Ponte Vedra, 7:30 p.m.

Thursday, May 5

Championship Game – Semifinal winners, 7 p.m.

Class 5A-District 4 (At Belleview)

Monday, May 2

No. 4 Belleview 12, No. 5 St. Augustine 5

Tuesday, May 3

No. 1 Gainesville 11, No. 4 Belleview 4

No. 2 Vanguard (Ocala) 8, No. 3 New Smyrna Beach 7

Thursday, May 5

Championship Game – No. 1 Gainesville vs. No. 2 Vanguard (Ocala), 7 p.m.

 

Class 3A-District 2 (at Various Cities)

Monday, May 2

No. 4 Suwannee (Live Oak) 17, No. 5 Gadsden County (Havana) 0

Tuesday, May 3

No. 4 Suwannee (Live Oak) at No. 1 Baldwin, 7 p.m.

No. 3 Marianna at No. 2 Florida High (Tallahassee), 7 p.m.

Thursday, May 5

Championship Game – Semifinal winners, 7 p.m.

 

Class 3A-District 3 (at Various Cities)

Monday, May 2

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

Tuesday, May 3

No. 1 Keystone Heights 15, No. 4 Interlachen 0 (3)

No. 3 Santa Fe (Alachua) 9, No. 2 Palatka 8

Thursday, May 5

Championship Game – No. 1 Keystone Heights vs. No. 3 Santa Fe (Alachua), 7 p.m.

 

Class 2A-District 4 (at Various Cities)

Monday, May 2

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

Tuesday, May 3

No. 1 Peniel Baptist Academy (Palatka) 13, No. 4 Countryside Christian (Gainesville) 1

No. 3 Saint Francis Catholic Academy (Gainesville) 5, No. 2 St. Joseph Academy (St. Augustine) 1

Thursday, May 5

Championship Game – No. 1 Peniel Baptist Academy (Palatka) vs. No. 3 St. Francis Catholic Academy (Gainesville), 7 p.m.

Class 1A-District 5 (at Hilliard)

Monday, May 2

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

Tuesday, May 3

No. 1 Union County (Lake Butler) 16, No. 4 Bradford (Starke) 1

No. 2 Madison County 5, No. 3 Hilliard 3

Thursday, May 5

Championship Game – No. 1 Union County (Lake Butler) vs. No. 2 Madison County, 6 p.m.

Class 1A-District 6 (at Various Cities)

Monday, May 2

No. 4 Branford 5, No. 5 Taylor County (Perry) 4

Tuesday, May 3

No. 4 Branford 6, No. 1 Bell 1

No. 3 Fort White 5, No. 2 Lafayette (Mayo) 1  

Thursday, May 5

Championship Game – No. 3 Fort White vs. Bell/Branford winner, 7 p.m.

 

Class 1A-District 7 (at Dixie County)

Monday, May 2

No. 4 Chiefland 4, No. 5 Newberry 3

Tuesday, May 3

No. 1 Dixie County (Cross City) 10, No. 4 Chiefland 3

No. 2 Trenton 10, No. 3 Bronson 0 (5)

Thursday, May 5

Championship Game – No. 1 Dixie County (Cross City) vs. No. 2 Trenton, 7 p.m.

Class 1A-District 8 (at Various Cities)

Monday, May 2

No. 4 Hawthorne 16, No. 5 Wildwood 1

Tuesday, May 3

No. 1 Williston 15, No. 4 Hawthorne 0

No. 2 Taylor (Pierson) 10, No. 3 Fort Meade

Thursday, May 5

Championship Game – No. 1 Williston vs. No. 2 Taylor (Pierson), 7 p.m.

Chiefland softball postgame huddle
Chiefland huddles following their 10-3 loss to Dixie County in the 1A-District 7 semifinals on Tuesday. 

Tags:none
Enjoying our local sports coverage? Get Mike Ridaught's twice weekly sports newsletter in your inbox.
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments