TUESDAY AT 7 P.M. UNLESS NOTEDClass 6A-Region 3MITCHELL (19-6) AT RIVER RIDGE (27-1)WHERE: 11646 Town Center Road, Port Richey, 34654
OUTLOOK: No matter what, there will be a Pasco County team playing in a region final and that has been River Ridge's goal since its loss in last year's 6A-3 final to Lakewood Ranch 10-0. A rival River Ridge knows all too well stands in its way: Mitchell, which slipped out of Winter Haven with a 2-0 win. The Mustangs must play near-perfect softball if they look to upset the one-loss Royal Knights, who lost to Plant more than a month ago. Royal Knights pitcher Makenzie Goluba (0.34 ERA, 143 Ks) has been playing at her best lately, striking out 10 in River Ridge's 16-3 win against Sebring in the region quarterfinals.
Class 5A-Region 2BROOKSVILLE HERNANDO (21-7) AT GULF (15-13)WHERE: 5355 School Road, New Port Richey, 34652
OUTLOOK: Adversity has been in the dugout with the Buccaneers the past month. Piled with high expectations after a disappointing 1-0 loss to Fivay in last year's 5A-District 8 semifinals, the Buccaneers had to endure seven forfeits this spring, which came via an ineligible player. Many thought Gulf might be down and out after the forfeits, but all the Buccaneers have done since is win the school's first district title in softball and first home postseason game: a 6-1 victory against Tavares last week. The Buccaneers and Leopards have tremendous pitchers. Gulf sends junior Madison Morlan (1.16 ERA, 133 Ks) and Hernando sends Courtney Riddle (21-6, 172 Ks). ... Hernando defeated Gulf 9-2 in the Leopard Softball Slam tournament earlier this month.
Class 2A-Region 1DELTONA TRINITY CHRISTIAN (12-7) AT ACADEMY AT THE LAKES (9-5)WHEN/WHERE: 4 p.m.; Live Oak Park, 9190 Imperial Oak Blvd., Tampa, 33647
OUTLOOK: An unusual first-round bye in the Class 2A playoffs had Academy at the Lakes sitting at home and waiting on its opponent: Deltona Trinity Christian, which defeated Lecanto Seven Rivers Christian 4-1. The Wildcats haven't played many games this season (14) and should benefit from plenty of rest. AATL features University of South Florida-commit Lauren Evans (18 RBIs, five triples), who can play shortstop, first base or pitcher.