Gainesville softball tops Williston in regular season finale

The Gainesville softball team defeated Williston, 6-3, at home on Friday night in the regular season finale for both teams.

The visiting Red Devils scored two runs in the top of the 1st inning with two outs to take an early 2-0 lead. Following back-to-back singles, Kyndall Smith singled to centerfield to drive in the first run of the game.

An error on a throw to third base scored Raegan Geiger, who had also singled, for a 2-0 Williston lead.

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GHS answered and tied it in the bottom of the first inning.

Senior Ayanna Woodard led off with a walk, and later scored on an error. A ground out by senior Brianna Boggs scored junior Jayla Clark, who had reached on a bunt single, to tie the game 2-2.

The Hurricanes (16-6) took their first lead at 3-2 on an RBI single by junior Parris Wiggs (3-for-4) in the bottom of the second inning.

Williston (6-14) put a runner on base in every inning but the final inning but the ‘Canes were able to turn two double plays to keep the Red Devils off the scoreboard.

“I think we played an all-around game,” said Gainesville coach Chris Chronister. “Offensively we were on, we made some great defensive plays, and baserunning we were on our game there too, so just an all-around win.”

Senior Kourtney Bryant led off the bottom of the fourth with her fourth home run of the year to give the Hurricanes a 5-2 lead.

Bryant, who also singled and scored in the second, said the key was keeping the energy up.

“That’s what really got us the win,” she said. “We needed this win going into districts.”

In the bottom of the fifth, senior Addison Joseph hit her first triple of the season and scored on a sacrifice to give GHS a 6-2 lead.

Sophomore Charlotte Sims picked up the win in the circle by tossing 5.2 innings and allowing just two earned runs.

This was the final regular season game for both teams.

Williston will be the No. 3 seed in Class 1A-District 8 and will play No. 2 seed Fort Meade in Wednesday’s district semifinals.

GHS will be the No. 1 seed in Class 5A-District 3 and will play the winner of the St. Augustine-Columbia (Lake City) game in Tuesday’s district semifinals.

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