Sports beat: Several area boys basketball teams advance in the state playoffs

On Thursday night a pair of Alachua County boys basketball teams advanced to the next round of the FHSAA state playoffs.

Defending state champion Hawthorne defeated visiting Vanguard (Lake Wales), 54-39, in the opening round of the 1A state playoffs. The Hornets (13-9) will play at Wildwood on Tuesday with a berth in the state semifinals on the line. Wildwood advanced with a 79-42 win against Williston. The Red Devils finish the season at 14-7.

Santa Fe (Alachua) advanced with a 58-37 win against Central (Brooksville) in a Class 4A-Region 2 Quarterfinal. The Raiders (17-5) will host Eastside (Gainesville) on Tuesday in the regional semifinals. The Rams (20-2) received a bye after The Villages canceled their game due to COVID-19 concerns.

Trenton held off a furious rally by Hamilton County (Jasper) that saw the Trojans overcome a 20-point deficit. The Tigers were outscored 31-15 in the fourth quarter but held on for a 77-75 win. On Tuesday, Trenton will host Madison County, which eliminated Bell, 48-32, for the right to advance to the Class 1A state semifinals. Bell’s season ended at 18-9.

Elsewhere, St. Francis Catholic Academy’s season came to an end in Class 2A with a 63-56 loss to St. John Paul II. P.K. Yonge lost a heartbreaker at home to Trinity Prep (Winter Park) in Class 3A, falling on a 35-footer at the buzzer. The Blue Wave’s season ends at 14-11.

Columbia (Lake City) nearly hit the century mark in its game at Tate (Cantonment) in a Class 6A-Region 1 Quarterfinal. The Tigers won 96-73 and advance to Tuesday’s regional semifinals at Lincoln (Tallahassee).

SOFTBALL: The Class 1A No. 1 ranked Trenton softball team opened up the season with a 7-0 win against 6th-ranked Williston this past Tuesday night. Darian Ingram, a Florida Atlantic University signee, struck out 17 batters in the game. Keeli Zingaro, Adrian Ingram, and Ryleigh Weeks led the Tigers offensively with a combined seven hits. Trenton, which is ranked 19th nationally by MaxPreps, will travel to Suwannee (Live Oak) tonight at 7 p.m.

BASEBALL: On Thursday night, the Trenton baseball team cruised to a 14-0 win against Hawthorne in four innings to improve to 2-0 on the season. Johnny Scott picked up the win on the mound. He threw three innings and allowed no hits with eight strikeouts. Scott also led the Tigers at the plate by going 3-for-4 with two runs batted in, two runs scored, and two stolen bases. Sam Bryan was 1-for-1 with an RBI, two runs scored and three stolen bases, and 6th-grader Brant Bivens had his first varsity hit for an RBI. Trenton will host Bronson tonight at 7 p.m.

Thursday night’s boys’ basketball playoff scores:

Regional Quarterfinals

6A-Region 1

Columbia (Lake City) 96, Tate (Cantonment) 73

4A-Region 2

Santa Fe (Alachua) 58, Central (Brooksville) 37

Eastside – bye

3A-Region 1

Trinity Prep (Winter Park) 68, P.K. Yonge (Gainesville) 66 (OT)

2A-Region 1

St. John Paul II (Tallahassee) 63, Saint Francis Catholic Academy (Gainesville) 56

Regional Semifinals

1A-Region 3

Madison County 48, Bell 32

Trenton 77, Hamilton County (Jasper) 75

1A-Region 4

Hawthorne 54, Vanguard (Lake Wales) 39

Wildwood 79, Williston 42

This news brief is brought to you by Radiant Credit Union, giving youth the power to shine. Radiant is federally insured by the NCUA.

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