Rough inning sinks Baldwin softball team in state semifinals

The Baldwin softball team turned in another stellar season, even if it ended with another tough loss.

The Indians reached the state semifinals for the second straight year but couldn’t get past Clearwater Calvary Christian in a 7-4 loss in the Class 3A final four game at Legends Way Ballfield in Clermont on Tuesday. Baldwin made program history by making the state semis for the second straight season under coach Jennifer Shields and finished 25-5.

It just hasn’t found a way around the Warriors (21-7). Calvary beat the Indians 5-3 in eight innings last year and used one big inning to fend off Baldwin in the rematch.

The Indians took a 4-2 lead in the top of the fifth on a Jazmine Ramos-Merced single that drove in two and snapped a 2-all tie. Baldwin scored all four of its runs in that inning. Just as quickly as the Indians took the lead, Calvary snatched it right back.

The Warriors surged back in the bottom of the frame, pushing five runs across and bounced Baldwin for the second straight season. Calvary pitcher Morgen Talley kept the Indians in check, scattering five hits across the distance and striking out a season-high 14.

Ramos-Merced and Raven Watson combined to go 4 for 6, accounting for all but one of Baldwin’s hits.

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