Copyright 2018 The Florida Times-Union
Florida Times-Union (Jacksonville)
Severe weather in the state has postponed the high school softball state tournament in Vero Beach this week.
The Florida High School Athletic Association announced that games would be pushed back to Saturday, Sunday, Monday (May 21) and Tuesday (May 22) at Historic Dodgertown in Vero Beach. Locally, that affects five teams that qualified -- Clay, Keystone Heights, Oakleaf, Trinity Christian and West Nassau.
Oakleaf (28-2) faces Lakewood Ranch (24-4) in Class 8A, Clay (18-12) gets Land O' Lakes (24-6) in 6A and West Nassau (23-6) and Keystone Heights (20-10) square off in an all-area semifinal in 5A. Those games are now on Saturday, with championship games in those classes on Sunday.
In Class 4A, Trinity (18-10) moves from facing Montverde (21-8) on Wednesday, to now playing on May 21.
"As everyone is aware, there is weather that has severely impacted the Treasure Coast area and will continue to make an impact until late in the week," the FHSAA said in a statement. "In the interest of player safety and avoiding unnecessary travel, the FHSAA is postponing the Softball State Championships."
The state tournament was initially scheduled to start Wednesday and finish on Saturday, but the Treasure Coast area has been hit by rough weather the last several days, with more expected throughout the week. The National Weather Service has forecast a 70 percent chance of rain from Wednesday through Saturday this week in Vero Beach.
"It doesn't affect us too much, we'll get an extra day to practice, maybe an extra day of preparation as far as scouting reports," said Oakleaf coach Christina Thompson, whose team is trying to defend its Class 8A state championship. "I feel for the 1As to the 4As. They were getting ready to play [early this week] and now they don't play until next week."
Trinity Christian, which plays in Class 4A, has had the lengthiest layoff among area qualifiers. The Conquerors' 14-0 regional final rout of North Bay Haven was on May 8. Trinity was expecting to play on Wednesday, but won't take the field until May 21 against Montverde.
"I look at it in a positive light, we'll get an extra practice in, probably get to hit in the cages before we leave Sunday," said Conquerors coach J.R. Borden. "I would've much rather played this week, but I'm kind of glad [it was postponed] if the weather's that bad. The problem you do have is kids in travel ball are already in tournaments right now and they'd planned on playing this weekend."
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