Wet weather disrupts FHSAA playoffs

Wet weather disrupts FHSAA playoffs

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Wet weather disrupts FHSAA playoffs

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Persistent rain has forced the postponement – and rescheduling – of high school playoff baseball and softball games over the past four days.

Wakulla High’s baseball team, for example, made its third consecutive trip to Panama City on Saturday in hope to play its Region 1-5A quarterfinal game against Panama City Rutherford.

The War Eagles will try again today, weather permitting, of course.

The Florida High School Athletic Association has cleared games to be played on Sunday due to the backlog of games, in addition to time and travel constraints.

“It has been nuts, but it has been raining everywhere so I don’t think anyone is getting in a lot of work,” said Wakulla coach Mike Gauger, who practiced his team in the school gymnasium once last week.

“You try to keep your team in a routine, but it’s not going to happen at this point, so you just do what you can.”

The FHSAA Softball Finals are scheduled to start Wednesday in Vero Beach for four of the organization’s eight classifications (odd numbers). Classes 2A, 4A, 6A and 8A open play on Friday.

While Class 1A Chipley and Liberty County, which eliminated Sneads on Saturday in a regional final, have advanced, 2A Munroe, 4A Madison County and 7A Chiles have yet to play their respective region finals.

Chiles is at Lake Howell today at 2 p.m., while Munroe (at Academy at The Lakes in Valrico) and Madison County (at Jacksonville Episcopal) each play on Monday.

The Timberwolves, who eliminated Lincoln 17-6 in last Tuesday’s region semifinal, beat Lake Howell last season to advance to the state tournament.

Chiles last held a full practice on Thursday and hit in its covered cages on Friday and Saturday.

“It’s frustrating because you don’t hope you go cold (offensively) all of a sudden,” said Chiles coach Adam Rich, whose team will depart for Winter Haven today at 7 a.m.

“We probably hit the ball for the first time like we are capable (against Lincoln). But the kids are pumped up and they will be ready to go.”

The 7A Chiles and 3A Maclay baseball teams each travel to the Jacksonville area on Monday for regional quarterfinal play. Chiles is at Orange Park Fleming Island, and Maclay is at Jacksonville Eagle’s View.

While both teams last played 10 days ago in their respective district tournaments, the winners will have a quick turnaround. Regional semifinals are scheduled for Tuesday.

Class 2A Aucilla Christian and 4A Madison County each have advanced into the semifinals. State favorite North Florida Christian was upset at home by Jacksonville Providence, 7-6, on Thursday in 3A.

Timberwolves coach Dick Steed practiced his team on Saturday in the rain. The Timberwolves also have covered batting cages.

“We needed to get out and were able to get some things done in the outfield,” he said. “Eventually, the rain is going to stop, the sun is going to come out and there will be baseball.”

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