Breezy Burnett and Mackenzie Marell combined for 7 RBI, and Bailey Cooley pitched a three-hitter as the Trinity Christian Academy Lady Conquerors defeated a major powerhouse from South Florida -- the Oxbridge Academy Thunderwolves of West Palm Beach -- 10-3 Tuesday evening in the first state semifinal.
Burnett drove in four runs on a 3-for-4 performance, in which all three hits resulted in tallies for the Conquerors. Burnett's first hit was a run-scoring double to center in the second that drove in Hannah Rivers and made the score 3-0. Rivers ran for Natalia Burnsed, who singled her way aboard and drove in Rylee Aspinwall just ahead of Burnette's double. Trinity also scored a run in the first on Morgan McMillian's RBI single.
Burnett later brought home Aspinwall with a base hit in the fourth to make the score 4-0, and her third hit of the night resulted in RBI's 3 and 4 when Tatiyana Brathwaite (runner for Cooley, single) and Linzie LaFavor (single) each came in. At that point, Trinity led 8-0, and the Conquerors were well on their way to victory.
Marell's two-run single in the sixth put Trinity ahead 10-0 and came one at-bat after her RBI single in the fifth. Overall, Marell finished with a final line of 3-4, R, and 3 RBI. LaFavor followed that fifth-inning hit with a run-scoring single of her own just before Burnett's two-run double. The Conquerors put four runs on the board in that big fourth inning.
Alexis Ross had a triple, two singles, a stolen base, and a run scored to help spark the Conquerors' offense. Reagan Griffis had a hit, a stolen base, and a run scored as well while Burnett, McMillian, and Amaya Ross all stole bases and Amaya Ross scored twice in the win.
Oxbridge (23-5) scored all three runs in the bottom of the sixth on a three-run home run from Caridad Estes following a hit batsman and a double. Otherwise, Cooley held the Thunderwolves in check despite the Thunderwolves' average of 11.03 runs per game in 27 games coming into Tuesday night's play.
Trinity also scored 10 runs on a pitching staff that allowed only 2.48 runs per game beforehand.
Cooley (W: 17-6, 2.16 ERA) allowed only three hits in seven innings for the Conquerors and did not allow a base runner until the fourth. Cooley walked two on the night while striking out four, including her final batter faced. She faced 26 batters and allowed only three hits, the first of which came in the bottom of the fifth.
The Conquerors (20-6) will play for the Florida Class 4A state championship on Wednesday, May 22. The team awaits the winner of Tuesday night's second semifinal between Tampa Catholic(19-8) and Westminster Christian (22-8). The championship game begins at 7:05 p.m. EST.
UPDATE: Westminster won 7-2, so it is Trinity vs. Westminster Christian for the title!